HC launches book on Goan migrants


Lib Dem Watford Councillor Rabi Martins released a book by author Selma Carvalho, entitled ‘A Railway Runs Through: Goans of British East Africa, 1865—1980,’ at the HSBC Club, Beckenham on 3 May, 2014. The book is the culmination of a three-year project funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund, UK, under the aegis of the Goan Association (UK). The main objective of the awarded grant was to record and archive the oral histories of those Goans who had migrated to Britain in the wake of Africanisation policies and expulsions, post-independence.
The history of Goans in British East Africa is quite distinct from that of other Indians. Closely allied with the British Civil Services, they were predominant in the Provincial administration. Their earlier role as intrepid entrepreneurs is now largely forgotten and this book hopes to reclaim these aspects of Goan history which have obscured with time. By awarding the grant, Britain has claimed this history as part of its national narrative, in its ever widening sphere of minority inclusion.
Collating three years of interviews and intensive archival research, Project Manager and author, Selma Carvalho, says we now have robust documentation which should be of great interest to the general public as well as to academics.

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