Salient. Victoria University of Wellington Students' Newspaper. Volume 31 Number 15, July 9, 1968
Sir—I am referring to Mr P. J. Kelly's statement on Indian and Asian students in the Salient, June 25, 1968.
What I gather is that Mr Kelly made two propositions as to why he thinks Indian and Asian students ought to be segregated:—
1 that Indian and Asian students are not able to express themselves well in English.
2 that there is an increase in arrogance among these students.
Being a Malaysian, I have to concede to some extent that I might not be able to converse and write in English as well as a New Zealand, such as Mr Kelly does, Nevertheless, to my mind one should make allowances for this handicap since English is a foreign language to me. Since my arrival in New Zealand I have made many a worthy friend and so far none have any complaints about my English.On the contrary, I am always eager to learn, especially from Mr Kelly how to converse in "first-class" English!
Concerning the arrogance of Indian and Asian students, I must again strees that it seems to me Mr Kelly has not made enough Indian and Asian friends to find out the real truth. It is almost a universal law that a foreigner will try his very best to adopt the way of life of the society he is living in—at least while living in that country. In doing so it is almost certain that he will try to secure as many friends as possible and to win the hearts of the people of that country. If he were arrogant he would get nowhere. However one is not expected to grin at every Tom, Dick and Harry that one meets.
Assuming that Mr Kelly has had some acquaintance with Indian and Asian students and was unlucky enough to be associated with one or two types whom he describes as arrogant, this is still miles from the real picture. One must not fall into the trap of generalising and so attribute to every other Indian and Asian student the same quality. He is not only wrong, unfair and biased but also, I personally think, this is using one's judgement in a most unintelligent manner.
A. Tajuddin, (Malaysia).