Making the British Indian voice count

Making the British Indian voice count

The 1928 Institute, in collaboration with the Indo-British All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG), held a special launch event in Parliament, which was hosted by Baroness Sandip Verma – also a member of the think tank.

This year’s celebration in the House of Lords marked a first with a prayer from the Nanakpanthi tradition. The prayer, marking Diwali celebrations, was in a mixture of Sanskrit and Punjabi.

Baroness Verma said: “It is great to see so many young people from the British Indian community in Parliament.

“The importance of ensuring their voices are contributing to our nation's debate is crucial. Diwali celebrations bring all generations together to bring light into our lives and communities together. It also marks the official launch of the 1928 Institute, the first British Indian think tank in UK.”

The 1928 Institute was set up last year as a platform for dialogue and to research and represent British Indians.

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Its goals are to develop thought-leadership to:

  • Represent British Indians to policymakers and the media

  • Foster a better understanding of our community, as well as explore wider public perceptions of Indian ideas

  • Deconstruct colonial narratives on our community, through creative written form and visual media

Co-Founders Dr Nikita Ved and Kiran Kaur Manku updated the gathering on the research conducted by the think tank, covering subjects such as Climate Change and Sustainable Behaviours, Mental Health and Covid-19 and Health.

“The last 18 months have set a really unique bunch of challenges for our community. However, it has also really highlighted the strengths and resilience and we have been honoured to showcase some of these strengths through our research,” said Ved, who called on the British Indian community to reach out with more subjects of importance.

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Manku added: “This is just the beginning. We are devoted to the British Indian community and want to showcase its diversity.”

Among some of the other key members of the think tank include British Indian MPs and peers – Virendra Sharma, Navendu Mishra, Lord Meghnad Desai and Lord Karan Bilimoria – as well as community leaders and artists such as City Sikhs Chair Jasvir Singh, Dr Seema Anand and Smita Tharoor.

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