ANI Photo | “Want India to succeed,” Indians of Chinese heritage in Kolkata enthusiastic of participating in poll process

As Kolkata heads into polls in the final phase of the Lok Sabha elections, Indians of Chinese heritage who have been living in the city for decades have expressed their enthusiasm in participating in the electoral process and extending their support to the country.
A small community of people of Chinese heritage whose forefathers had migrated to India when China was under imperial rule have been residing in Kolkata for several decades now. Some of them were even born here and have grown up to embrace the culture of the country.
The presence of the community is seen predominantly in Tiretta Bazar, famously known as old Chinatown, which has been in existence since the 1800s, and in the Tangra area of Kolkata.
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Tiretta Bazaar comes under the Kolkata North while Tangra comes under Kolkata South- and both the parliamentary constituencies will vote in the final sixth phase of the Lok Sabha elections on June 1.
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Once a sizeable population of 20,000, there are now about 2000 people of Chinese heritage living in the Tiretta Bazar and Chinatown areas of the city. Many people have migrated to other cities and some have moved abroad.
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Akhaluu, a 67-year-old resident of the Tiretta Bazar area told ANI, “I was born here and feel proud as an Indian. We always support India. We also support the Indian army and police. We respect the people of India. We are Indians and if needed we will extend our support to the Indian army. We want India should win everywhere.”
Another citizen, Hsinyuanchiu, 62, who lives in Chinatown, says he is proud of being a citizen of India and supports the country of birth.
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“Since I was born here, I have always supported India and its army. We, as Indians, love this nation and its culture. We are also teaching our future generations about Indian culture and heritage. I feel very proud to be Indian,” says Hsinyuanchiu.
Francein Liu who lives in Chinatown recalled that the East India Company had brought their forefathers all Chinese people to Kolkata to work in a sugar mill.
“Some people who initially lived in Central Avenue came here (Chinatown) and established a leather factory. We were born here and we like Indian culture. Now, we and the locals have blended so well that we don’t find any differences. We appreciate their culture, and they appreciate ours. We are all happily living here and the local people also like Chinese culture. We are staying together. We don’t have any issues. Many people are running many Chinese restaurants here,” Francein Liu said.
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Chen Me Yein says, “We have been here since 1942 when my grandfather arrived here with the family and I was born in Kolkata. We are very proud of staying here. ..We follow the culture here. I mostly eat Indian food and I cook Indian food, I don’t know much about Chinese foods.”
People from China came to India in the 18th century during British rule and started living in Kolkata. The number of people of Chinese heritage living in Kolkata has now dwindled as people have migrated to other countries.
want india to succeed indians of chinese heritage in kolkata enthusiastic of participating in poll process 6 – The News Mill
They now represent a fusion of cultures, traditions, and food with residents having established various Chinese restaurants and kitchens in the area.
Both Tiretta Bazar and Tangra have now become tourist hubs. A Chinese Kali Temple is located in the Chinatown area while a Chinese temple that is located in the Tiretta Bazar has also become a tourist hotspot

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