BBC's prog on white working class condemned

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London, Mar 12: BBC's environment reporter of Indian origin, Sarah Mukherjee, has condemned the channel's programme on the white working class for potraying them as violent and racist alcoholics who live on benefits.

BBC2 has been running the series under the banner White, suggesting that less affluent white people are ''under siege''. Ms Mukherjee, however, claimed yesterday that BBC staff were guilty of a negative portrayal of the white working class. The reporter made the comments after BBC's commissioning editor for documentaries, Richard Klein, said the corporation had been ''brave'' to make a series of programmes about the ''prejudices, alienation, fears and confusion'' of the white working class.

''Listening to the patronising conversations in some newsrooms, you will think white working-class Britain is one step away from anarchy, drinking themselves senseless and pausing only to draw benefits and beat up a few black and Asian people,'' the Daily Mail quoted her as saying. The white working-class people had the same concerns as the middle classes living in Notting Hill in west London, she added.

The White season is a week-long series which started last Friday. It ends this week with All White in Barking, which examines prejudices in the east London borough.

The channel has received complaints about the trailer for the season, which shows a white man's face being covered in black ink as phrases from foreign languages are written on him.


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