This article was last updated on April 16, 2022
Distinguished Hindu statesman Rajan Zed has strongly criticized awarding of Nobel Peace Prize to European Union (EU), calling it highly “illogical and irrational” in view of continuing apartheid conditions of its about 15-million Roma (Gypsy) populace.
Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, argued that EU had failed to “really” grant human rights to Roma which were available to other Europeans. Various “paper-plans”, ceremoniously launched but “half-heartedly” implemented, had not succeeded in bringing Roma in the mainstream, who had been in Europe since ninth century CE.
Listing “human rights” as one of the “EU's most important result” in its Prize announcement by Norwegian Nobel Committee was baffling and appeared to defy logic in view of continuous sufferings and maltreatment of Roma despite the existence of EU and its forerunners for over six decades, Rajan Zed pointed out.
Europe should wake up, show some maturity and instead of unleashing repression, it should “wholeheartedly” embrace its Roma brothers and sisters and urgently work on social inclusion and rehabilitation of Roma communities. Roma were still being used as scapegoats by politicians across Europe to gain political mileage. "How many more centuries must Roma reside in Europe to prove that they were 'real and equal' Europeans like any other?” Zed asked.
Rajan Zed noted that it was simply immoral, inhuman and a sin to watch voiceless Roma suffer day after day and their lives devastated by frequent crackdowns. It was moral obligation of Europe to take care of its largest minority Roma population and stop human rights violations suffered by them. There seemed to be no coherent and effective policy to assimilate them into the society. Their alarming condition was a social blight for Europe and the rest of the world.
Europe’s most persecuted and discriminated community, Roma reportedly regularly encountered social exclusion, racism, substandard education, hostility, joblessness, rampant illness, inadequate housing, lower life expectancy, unrest, living on desperate margins, stereotypes, mistrust, rights violations, discrimination, marginalization, appalling living conditions, prejudice, human rights abuse, etc., Zed stated.