This day marks the arrival of indentured labourers in Mauritius. After the abolition of slavery the British turned to India to recruit labour for the sugar cane field plantations in Mauritius. The first batch arrived on 2 November 1834 from Calcutta. The place where they landed and stayed near the harbour is known as the Aapravasi Ghat which has been subscribed to the World heritage. Ceremonies with cultural shows are held at that place in remembrance of those who marked the history of this country at the sweat of their hard labour.
But labour was recruited also from other parts of the region, namely China, Madagascar, Mozambique, the Comoro Islands, South-East Asia, Reunion Island and Aden (now known as Yemen). The chinese came between 1837 and 1843, while those from Malagasy Republic came between 1839 and 1857. Others who came were non-indentured.
Alfa King Memories
Mauritian residing in Rodrigues, Amanoola Khayrattee (pen name Alfa King) is contributing writer and journalist to La Gazette Mag de l’océan indien and This Week News Mauritius.
Retired, former meteorological cadre, trade unionist and OSH consultant, Amanoola has written for in-house union and other journals, publications and magazines. He runs two blogs since 2007: “Alfa King Memories”, and “Le Journal d’Alfa King”. When he is not reading or writing, he is on a 10+ km daily hike in anticipation of his monthly trails.
Amanoola may be reached at [email protected].