Amit Batish, a first-generation migrant Australian, is the One Nation candidate for the western Sydney federal electorate of Chifley. The seat has been a Labor stronghold for more than 50 years, with current MP Ed Husic going for his fourth successive term.
Mr Batish wants to challenge the status quo. He says the major parties are basically the same.
“The two ruling parties that are coming turn by turn are no different. If you take away the cover, you see that they’re the same thing. They don’t care about the people. They’re it in for themselves,” Mr Batish told NRI Affairs.
A small business owner for over 15 years, Mr Batish joined the active politics in 2016-17 “because there were that turntable prime ministers happening which we have seen in India before.”
“And then we had this push for woke ideologies not just in schools but in a political system that we could start to see. And big one was the quota system. So again, we have seen that it doesn’t work in India. I remember when Mandal Commission in the 1990s introduced a quota system there. That was never with a good intention, and I didn’t want to see it happening in Australia.”
Listen to the full interview:
Mr Batish says he chose to join One Nation because “One nation had policies that were actually talking about the people on the ground and issues that they face every day.”
“One Nation had the values that I could relate to,” he emphasised.
New South Wales One Nation leader Mark Latham says Amit Batish is an asset to the party.
“We need more people from Indian Hindu background in councils. I think there’s one at the moment in Hornsby, one at Strathfield etc. And in state parliament, Daniel Mookhey is a labour guy, but he’s more a trade union labour representative than standing up for that particular community. So it’s very important to get people, no matter their politics, running for office. The Hindu community should be more than advocates and lobbyists. They should be decision-makers,” Mr Latham told NRI Affairs.
Mr Batish agrees with Mr Latham. He says people of Indian origin need to take part in politics actively.
“I take pride in myself that Indian community is one of the communities that has very much integrated very well with Australian culture. We can do wonders for politics and bring our experience from the subcontinent. A lot of things that are happening here now, we have already faced those issues back in India like education, quota system and politics in the education system. So, we can make a big difference. It’s only we need to motivate more people to get into politics and be more politically aware.”
As a parent of two high school kids, Mr Batish feels that the education system is being slowly and gradually converted into a left propaganda machine and education is one of the issues he wants to work on through his politics.
He said, “Education system is another one where Mark has been doing such a great job in the state parliament. I want to do that same thing from the federal level.”
“Our schools are being systematically targeted by activists and have become breeding grounds for the new generation of political activists,” he said in an interview published on his website.
Mark Latham and Amit Batish deny that One Nation is an anti-Muslim or anti-migrants party, an allegation the Paulin Hanson-led party has faced over the years.
“That’s not true,” notes Mr Latham, “I’m the only one in state parliament who has moved the Religious Freedom bill that’s been supported by the Islamic community and the Hindu community, the Jewish community, Catholics, Anglican Christians across the board. I worked productively with the Islamic community. Whatever perception was 25 years ago is not valid now for NSW One Nation.”
Mr Batish adds that One Nation is not against migrants or any particular community and that this is a fear-mongering campaign.
“It is the number of migrants. There is a big difference between being against a migrant and being against the uncontrolled number of migrants. That is totally different. Labor and Liberal parties are projecting us as anti-immigrant party because they don’t have anything else to question us.”