Rishi Sunak, the man bringing a bit of India to Downing Street

The new British Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak. TOLGA AKMEN / AFP

PORTRAIT – Boris Johnson’s former Chancellor of the Exchequer has been nominated by Britain’s Conservatives to become Prime Minister.

For millions of people in Britain and India, it is a sign. For the first time, the country has a head of government of Indian origin in full celebration of Diwali, the great festival of lights celebrated by Hindus and Sikhs. For Rishi Sunak himself, this nod to the calendar is probably not unimportant. In an interview at Timeslast summer, he confided how the ceremony of lighting the diya lamps on the steps of Downing Street when he was Chancellor of the Exchequer had been one of the proudest moments of his career. “It meant a lot to a lot of people and it was a great thing in our country,” he had declared. Of Hindu religion he also confided how much his faith “gave him strength, purpose and was part of who he was”.

In addition to the political psychodrama among the Tories and the economic crisis rocking the country, a man of Indian origin enters Downing Street…

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