VIENNA: A touris from UK Mr Param Singh complaint that I am a British Indian visiting Vienna on holiday with a group of 16 Hindu and Sikh friends including entrepreneurs, bankers, consultants and real estate professionals and this is our first visit to Austria.
As part of our holiday we were hoping to experience some of the Vienna nightlife and on Friday the 1st of March we went to the Roller Coaster restaurant and afterwards tried to get into Prater Dome club at around 10.30pm and were told that the club was full by the 2 security men at the entrance. This was clearly not the case as white people were going straight in and our group of 16 British Indians was told to stand to one side. I asked to see the manager and a man came out who was even ruder and told us to go.
On Saturday we went to the Vienna Volksoper to watch the Der Mann Von La Mancha at 7.30pm and afterwards went to Ristorante Francesco for dinner. At around midnight myself and a friend went to Club Loco and was told by the security staff at the front that the club was ‘members only’. If the club was a members-only how did they know if I was a member or not without checking my “membership”? When I tried to take a picture of the club and the 2 security staff one of them became aggressive and started shouting.
If that wasn’t enough on Sunday 3rd March we went to see the Belvedere Palace and noticed that at least a couple of the staff in the palace followed a fee of us whilst we were taking pictures. I am absolutely certain this would ot have been the case had we been European in race.
If in my short experience of staying in Vienna I have been denied entry into venues based on my race or skin colour then I am wondering how people of colour who are permanently resident in this country are treated in both their daily lives and their workplace? It would seem like EU laws on human rights don’t have much value in Austria even though the same country has been the home to great thinkers like Mozart and Sigmund Freud.
I noted that the Schönbrunn Palace had both Chinese and Indian themed rooms in the palace showing the interest that Austrian royalty had with other cultures. What has happened in modern Austria?