Gaurav Sharma (right) interviews Bollywood star, Sidharth Malhotra who had been named as New Zealand’s tourism ambassador for India (image: JK Images).

Podcast: the unheeded warnings in the leadup to the Christchurch attacks

Communities with a first-hand view of racism had warned authorities of threats ahead of the mosque attacks in Christchurch. Gaurav Sharma speaks about how this knowledge has turned his grief into anger, in a new edition of the For Auckland podcast.

“I can’t tell you how angry I am,” says Gaurav Sharma, editor-in-chief of the Auckland-based Multicultural Times. “Nobody was listening to us.”

Sharma is angry that warning signs he personally brought to the attention of authorities in Christchurch and to the central government, were ignored.

In this episode of the For Auckland podcast, Sharma shares the grief and shock he is struggling with since the attacks in Christchurch and Sri Lanka. Having experienced terrorism before migrating to New Zealand, he knows the path from grief to anger. He understands the pain and frustrations of the communities most affected by the Christchurch shootings.

Sharma is a uniquely informed source on the diverse communities and views across the motu. The Indian-trained journalist moved to Christchurch in 2014, where he founded The Migrant Times, now called Multicultural Times, to provide a voice for New Zealand’s multicultural communities. Now he runs the Multicultural Times out of Auckland in the hope of providing ethnic issues, news, and views with adequate representation in our public discourse.

Sharma has a traumatic personal experience of terrorism. Some of his first days in journalism were covering the terrorist attacks in Ahmedabad on 26 July 2008. Fifty-eight people were killed and more than two hundred injured.

But his message is ultimately a positive one. Sharma says that while the challenges of the Christchurch massacre are just beginning, healthy and healing responses are also taking shape. Healing is achievable, he says.

Listen to Gaurav Sharma on For Auckland on the player below, subscribe on iTunes, or download this episode (right click and save). For Auckland is brought to you by the Committee for Auckland and produced by The Spinoff.

Gaurav Sharma covering Ganesh Chaturthi (image: JK Images).

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