First Asian woman to get peerage: ‘I lost faith after learning about the Shoah’

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First Asian woman to get peerage: ‘I lost faith after learning about the Shoah’

British-Indian crossbencher Baroness Shreela Flather says she became a 'non-believer' after being educated about the Holocaust

Baroness Shreela Flather,
Baroness Shreela Flather,

The first Asian woman to receive a peerage has told of how she lost her religious faith after learning about the Holocaust.

Baroness Shreela Flather, a British-Indian crossbencher who is now among the country’s foremost humanists, was speaking on Thursday in a House of Lords debate on religious persecution.

“When I learned about the Holocaust, I became a non-believer,” she said. “I thought, if six million people who prayed and were good people had no response, I am not going to waste my time.”

Flather, 85, was a teacher born into an esteemed Hindu family and became the first Asian woman to be given a British peerage after being nominated by the Conservatives in 1990.

Her great grandfather Sir Ganga Ram was a noted architect and engineer who became known as “the father of Lahore” for his infrastructure-building in modern Pakistan.

She was speaking during a debate about religious persecution last week, following the publication of a report on the subject by the Bishop of Truro.

He was asked to review the situation it was revealed last year that 215 million Christians faced persecution and harassment in 144 countries.

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