Painted cotton hanging, pitchurai of theVallabhacharya Sampradaya, South Rajasthan, 19th century


After realizing how popular the Queen was in England immediately after Princess Diana's death, now it's India's turn to give her a small dose of self-realization

During her state visit to India, The Queen Elizabeth II, the head of the Commonwealth and the Duke of Edinburgh are facing an unprecedented hostile environment.

The hostility is in fact, a reaction to an anachronistic British system which assumes that the Queen is entitiled to an unquestioned loyalty by it's citizens. The Queen accepted after Diana's death that the Monarchy was not going to be the same. Where she failed, was to change her advisors who are still living in the imperial age, which seems to be older than thr quarters of a century.

The Queen's speech writer gave her an outrageous speech to read in Islamabad which was seen as a direct interference between the relationship of India and Pakistan. The speech writers of the Queen never made her speak about Northern Ireland as she was commenting on the issue of Kashmir.

While the British Government has apologised for causing the potatoe famine in Ireland a hundered years ago and now they are ready to apologise for the atrocities of the British soldiers during the Bloody Sunday in Northern Ireland, why then did the Queen not appear to be generous enough to apologise for the British Army's massacre at the Jallianwalah Bagh.

What we got, was to add insult to injury when the Duke of Edinburgh commented that the Indians were manipulating the figures of people martyred in the Punjab and the son of General Dyer was right when he told the Duke the right figure.

The British High Commission in New Delhi never get anything right. The High Commissioner, who was knighted by the Queen earlier this year has been accused in India for interfering in it's domestic affairs. He has also been responsible for mounting a major trading exhibition: 'Towards 2000' in NewDelhi to co-incide with the Queen's visit. This One million pound spectacular bonanza lacks substance as well as glitter according to many discerning visitors.

While India sent the best of it's artists and talent to Britain this year in order to present a showcase for the British to see, 'Towards 2000' is mounting a fashion show by a University symbolising the British culture. Indians are also subjected to a Celtic rock band totally unknown in Britain, an exhibition of cricket photographs which reminds it's viewers of the past glories of Britain, mime artists who cannot sing songs of the Great Britishness and seminars on advanced manufacturing, after two decades of the deliberate destruction of the British manufacturing by theTory Government to defeat trade-unions.

Most of the big British companies such as Prudential (after the pushy insurance salesmen scandal), Smithkline Beecham, GEC, ICI and National Grid who are taking part in the New Delhi exhibition have exhausted their markets in Europe including Britain and would like to push their incompetent products to India

But India has seen the best of the technology from Germany, Japan, US and Korealately. Indian engineers are second to none in the world and they get generous offers from all over the world for very competent collaborations.

It seems that the British civil servants have to do a little bit more homework before they mount anything high-profile in India otherwise they will be vinidicating the Prime Minister I.K. Gujeral's comments: 'Britain is the third-rate power in the world'.