ABSTRACT OF THESES
This thesis highlights the ebbs and flows of the Indian minority's struggles against
the systematic and unjust segregation of mankind along racial lines. Their courage and
principled resistance as well as their fears as a minority during the period of 1971 to
1985, are captured in this study.
It begins by briefly tracing the community's struggles from the early 1860s,
against the racist laws that targeted them, to how by the 1950s closer inter-ethnic ties
were forged with the other oppressed groups and joint struggles against apartheid were
The political and socio-cultural resistance of the community in the province of
Natal, during the period concerned, is the subject of detailed scrutiny. Based upon
primary materials collected by the author from South Africa, the thesis seeks to capture
the dynamics of Indian resistance during these tumultuous years.
The political resistance of the Natal Indian Congress (NIC) led Indian community
is zeroed on in chapters two and three. The efforts of the NIC to galvanise its
constituency, which had turn apathetic during the 1960s under the weight of state
repression, are scrutinised. The NIC's links with and contributions to the African
National Congress' wider anti-apartheid resistance also remains a constant theme. The
development of inter-ethnic unity between the oppressed communities is also highlighted.
This unity which grew from strength to strength, finally received a setback, the Inanda
violence in 1985. It damaged Indo-African ties, leading to alterations in the resistance
dynamics that had been developing.