Dr Shantanu Panigrahi’s speech delivered ahead of the Gillingham and Rainham Constituency Labour Party Meeting for a Motion to Conference
The following is a speech that I prepared to deliver to the local Labour Party with regard to the following blogpost: https://shantanup.wordpress.com/2016/08/08/fate-of-a-motion-for-the-labour-party-conference/
DR SHANTANU PANIGRAHI’S SPEECH TO GILLINGHAM AND RAINHAM CONSTITUENCY LABOUR PARTY MEMBERS IN MEETING OF 9 SEPTEMBER 2016 ON ESSENTIAL CONFERENCE BUSINESS
Dear Members The title of my Motion is: ‘Labour Party will raise the issue at Parliament that immigrants need special measures of protection from the racism perpetrated by law enforcement agencies’. There are two motions on the table and only one can go through to the Conference. In these few minutes I hope to provide you with sufficient justification on why my Motion needs to be supported and why we should not waste our only opportunity to make a significant contribution to peaceful life in this country by strengthening the law and order system by preferring the alternative motion on Party democracy to go through to the next stage of consideration.
Before I start I should make it clear that I am not an experienced speaker in public let alone being an orator that is a prerequisite for someone wishing to become a politician – the last time I spoke to an audience was 25 years ago as an agricultural scientist talking about chickens. So I am not a politician but would classify myself to being an activist, someone hell bent to improving things. To this end I have blogged in my website Shantanu Panigrahi’s Blog where I have highlighted issues of concern to humanity. I have blogged about what I have come here to speak on: racism by the justice system of the United Kingdom as institutionalised racism in which the racist sentiments of officials direct the procedures of law and order. I feel my detailed experiences have identified a problem that needs resolution. So I put forward the evidence for consideration of a Motion to be read out by a Councillor to full meeting of Medway Council at its Meeting on 13 October 2016 but could not find any Councillor willing to do the necessary reading at this official democratic venue. So I next turned my attention to the annual Conference of the Labour Party which I thought should take note of my experiences and develop the new policies necessary by raising the matter in Parliament for a cross-party resolution of the problem. I had come to a point where I realised that simply blogging was not enough of an activism. Activism had to go further into real action in the communities and change the real lives of people. Although I prefer to write my views I was told by the Secretary that the only way in which I could get my concerns taken note of was to speak on the issue at this venue in order to try and convince Members to support the Motion. So activism brought me to having to be able to speak in public when such speaking is something very new for me. But the cause that I have taken up towards the end of my productive years is so very important to me that I thought I must give it a go. And here I am. Why is the cause important? Without justice what kind of society do we have in which people cannot go about their lawful activities without interference and obstacles?
From my very youth I have been a supporter of the Labour Party although in recent years my interest in finding out about life, people and democracy led me to joining forces with other parties to attain particular ends before I finally decided that they were definitely the wrong political parties to be associated with. I needed factual evidence for my beliefs. It was time to join the right political party. So I joined Labour. I am proud of this history because I believe that one must have concrete evidence on which to base ones beliefs. Even though the Party is going through very tough times as we all know and no one gives Labour any hope of ever forming a government again it was going to be the right place to be in. Whilst it is good to be in government a lot can be done in Opposition too. If the cause deserves support Labour from Opposition can make changes that the country needs. I believe that the cause of justice for all is something that Labour needs to reassess as it rediscovers itself in time for the next general election.
There is something very wrong with our law enforcement agencies of the United Kingdom that is particularly detrimental to the justice experienced by the immigrant community. It is this: the system in operation makes it very easy for the institutionalised racism to perpetrate its nastiness upon the unsuspecting public who come to access legal protection from criminals and lesser wrongdoers in society. I have a lot of experience of having faced this racism as a victim. The worst part of suffering is that hard evidence is ignored by law enforcement and politicians alike and kept covered up so that the perpetrators escape the due process of justice. It has taken me considerable effort and patience to even get to this point where I am speaking to you all about this. For my efforts to highlight the problem were simply ignored by the democratic institutions. This experience has led me to consider the unfortunate truth that we need to come to terms with the idea that racism might be endemic in the indigenous British blood and very few people genuinely overcome it. Racism might be a fact of life not just about the British but to mankind throughout the world. It stems from ignorance. The British affliction of racism might be exacerbated by the nations celebration of the historical supremacy of British colonials that might reveal that people of the underdeveloped world are not only bad to look at because of their colour they have an inferior mind too, and not that their priorities are different from that of the materialistic.
By the purposes of this Motion by law enforcement agencies I not only mean the Police Force, the Courts both civil and criminal, but also the Employment Tribunals, the Mental Health Tribunal and the Independent Police Complaints Commission. How do I know that there is racism that is perpetrated in the dealings that law enforcement authorities engage in. I have been the victim of injustices that can only be attributed to an inherent hatred of me as an alien immigrant. This showed itself when they deliberately misspelt my name to make fun of in their official dealings and used deceit to hide their real intentions.
As an immigrant of almost 45 years I know that immigrants whose mother tongue is not English language face considerable problems in corresponding with officials in the judicial and other law enforcement authorities. As they are generally from poor families they lack the funds to hire expensive solicitors and barristers to obtain justice and rely on themselves to conduct such business as is their right in a truly democratic society. Because of the complexities of English language immigrants are unable to communicate their true feelings and facts to authorities and are therefore easily fobbed off, as the expression goes, by unscrupulous or indifferent court officials. People go to solicitors because they are afraid of the law enforcement authorities, and they are right to be afraid. I wish to obliterate this fear. The immigrant has even greater problems because of the language barrier. Frequently, the authorities can couch their racist tendencies in English language that would make it hard to detect that they are being taken for a ride.
It has been my experience that there is considerable racism that manifests itself towards the immigrant population who seek justice for crimes and civil misdemeanours; both directly by Employment Tribunals and Civil Courts, and the Police Force. The manner in which this racism is perpetrated is through manipulation of the rules that govern these proceedings. Frequently, the applicant for redress is asked to go to a Solicitor or the Citizens Advice Bureau when the judicial authorities cannot give a straightforward answer to a request. At other times there is total silence to thwart civil proceedings. The issue of hate crime is a particular point on which the Police skip over the essential elements of a Case. The other is when the Law Enforcement agencies are confronted with evidence that the judges are deliberately perverting the course of justice under the understanding that they are immune from prosecution for gross misconduct charges or criminal conspiracy to side with employers rather than the worker for example or to protect the perceived interests of the State. This racist attitude will be covered over through showing that there are genuine charges like ‘wasting court time’, ‘contempt of court’ ‘abuse of the process of court’ and ‘vexatious litigation’, for which costs may be awarded against the litigant. The immigrant having poor understanding of English language and the trickeries involved in email communications is put at a considerable disadvantage when it comes to tackling the racism that the person is victimised with.
The Police having the power of the State will make unwanted telephone calls to you at home in order to manipulate legal proceedings and will not record crimes submitted to it by email communications so that there is something in writing, for their email addresses are very hard to obtain. I only managed to obtain them from persistence enquiries over a long period.
Significantly the law enforcement agenices will protect each other, the Police protects the Court officials and the Court officials protect the Police and Tribunals, and the Independent Police Complaints Commission will protect the Police.
To assist the immigrant population, his or her fear of approaching the judicial authorities need to be removed by making it possible for the individual to bring officials and judges to civil proceedings to be sued for compensation damages by the victim who has been wronged. This is not possible at the present time. It is for these reasons that the Labour Party should analyse and act on the my experience as detailed in my Blog: Shantanu Panigrahi’s Blog https://shantanup.wordpress.com/
I am not asking for positive discrimination which generates distortions in society. I am asking that regulation of the work of law enforcement agencies be controlled to give power to the victim of racism to seek legal redress for the victimisation suffered.
If the Labour Party strives to be an anti-racist party it must allow my Motion to go through to the Conference 2016 for consideration by the wider Party. I am ready and willing to work with the delegate to ensure that the substance of this Motion is represented to Conference.
With that I commend this Motion to the Gillingham and Rainham Constituency Labour Party.
After submission of the speech for circulation among the members it was not permitted to be delivered on the day due to a time allocation of only 3 minutes to move the motion, so I submitted the following condensed version to the Party for the Chairman to move on my behalf in my absence. Someone will have to second the motion at the Meeting.
MOVING THE MOTION AT GILLINGHAM AND RAINHAM CONSTITUENCY LABOUR PARTY
The title of my Motion is that ‘Labour Party will raise the issue at Parliament that immigrants need special measures of protection from the racism perpetrated by law enforcement agencies’.
Many of us would be familiar with cases that have emerged in the public domain of racism in implementation of justice by the Criminal Justice System. My experience of the past 18 years of taking matters to Employment Tribunals, the Civil and Criminal Courts, the Mental Health Tribunal, the Police and the Independent Police Complaints Commission is that there is considerable racism that manifests itself towards the immigrant population who seek justice for crimes and civil misdemeanours. You may have read the detailed speech that I prepared for this Meeting that I circulated to you all by email last Saturday after being informed by the Chairman that I would only have three minutes to move this Motion today not the fifteen minutes that I sought. So what I can say now in moving this motion is that the manner in which racism is perpetrated is through manipulation of the rules that govern proceedings that immigrants may pursue with these law enforcement agencies. The procedures need to be tightened and safeguards implemented to make it impossible for court officials to manipulate justice through their racist tendencies.
To assist the immigrant population his or her fear of approaching the law enforcement authorities need to be removed by making it possible for the individual to bring the officials including judges to civil proceedings to be sued for compensation damages by the victim who has been wronged. This is not possible at the present time.
It is for these reasons that the Labour Party should analyse and act on my experiences as detailed in my Blog: Shantanu Panigrahi’s Blog https://shantanup.wordpress.com/ and raise this matter in Parliament.
I hereby move this motion.
11 September 2016 Update:
My Motion for 2016 Conference (3)
11 September 2016 at 17:30
At the meeting, Adam proposed your motion and it was seconded by another member who was present. When it was voted on, your motion was passed. However, the other motion was also passed by the meeting. When the meeting voted on which of the two motions to present to the conference arrangements committee as our contemporary motion, the meeting decided on the other motion, rather than yours.
I am sorry that your motion was not chosen by the meeting on this occasion. I hope that we will see you at a branch or constituency meeting when, as we hope will be soon, we are again permitted to hold them.
On 10 September 2016 at 12:15 Shan Panigrahi <email@example.com> wrote:
Please let me know if my Motion was approved by the CLP Meeting yesterday to go through to as our contemporary Motion to the 2016 Labour Party Conference.