A group of students from India was denied entry into a local club in Kaunas city of Lithuania on Saturday due to their Asian ethnicity and colour of skin. Lakshya Tanwar, 27, had gone to a local club named Dejavu in the Kaunas with five other friends. However, when they reached the club, the bouncers there didn’t let them in but allowed other white people of European ethnicity in front of them. When asked why they were not being allowed inside while others were going in without being asked a single question, the club asked them to leave the place while one of its employee murmured “something very offensive”.
The incident took place on Saturday night when Tanwar, along with his friends Abhishek Purushothum and Dixit Salecha from India, Denisse Garcia from Venezuela, Ana Rocío Malacón and Irene Sierra from Mexico went to the Devazu club in Kaunas. They all are the students of Rennes School of Business in France and were in Lithuania as part of an exchange program with Vytautas Magnus University in Kaunas.
“It was a weekend and we went to this club…. Dezavu. However, we were not allowed to go inside. The guard standing at the entry gate stopped us but allowed other people of white skin. We knew it was clear racism from that hateful look on their faces until one of them murmured something very offensive,” Tanwar told News Nation.
“I know what he said. Though he said it in a very low pitch, I could hear that. I felt anguished, in fact, we all did. There were two other Mexican friends as well. They were of the near same tone,” he added.
Racism in Lithuania is nothing new and the Baltic state of Europe is known for its negative attitude and action towards people from other races, especially Asians (Pakistani, Bangladeshi, Indians). Muslims, refugees and Chechens are regarded with disfavour in most parts of the country.
Although the Lithuania Government has made efforts to end racism and brought a law, they are not just enough and people from India and other parts of the world continue to face the hatred in the name of their ethnic origin, religion and nationality.