NEW YORK (TIP): The Indo-US Democracy Foundation (IUDF), a newly formed think tank, deplores the attack on elected representatives in the U.S. by a cadre of people belonging to the Hindutva group, who support ideologies opposed by America.
They are virtually threatening U.S. Representatives like Ro Khanna (California) and Pramila Jayapal (Washington) for not towing their line of Hindutva politics, which want to reshape India as a Theocracy or Hindu Rashtra. They even threatened Rep. Tom Suozzi of New York, a good friend of the Indian community, for demanding the restoration of democracy in Kashmir.
The Hindutva forces in the U.S. follow the ideology of RSS, a militant organization in India, who want to make India a Hindu Rashtra and keep the Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, Dalits, and others as second class citizens, denying them equality in their ancestral land. It is not acceptable. It is un-American to profess such a fascist ideology in this land of the free.
Rep. Khanna’s grandfather was a freedom fighter for India’s independence struggle and suffered greatly in jail for many years. Rep. Khanna rightly says that his grandfather fought for all Indians, and he cannot support divisive ideologies now. Rep. Jayapal, too, demanded democratic rights for Kashmiris, who are citizens of India.
The Hindutva forces in the U.S. may have money, power, and numbers; however, they forget that they have reached this level of success because of the democratic, secular, and tolerant fabric of this great country. While they enjoy the freedom and great opportunities in this nation, they are working hard on the sideline to deny these same rights and liberties to minorities and lower castes in India.
These wolves in many garbs are busy trying to influence policies in Washington, often masquerading as champions for the Indian community in America. Moreover, many Asian Indians in this country remained quiet for too long, under the false impression that India needed lobbying by these Hindutva groups for a better bilateral relationship. However, upon careful examination, these folks are exposed as more militant and strident in their voices than their so-called mentors in India, which is sad. It appears that they have brought their whole baggage of racism and bigotry to these shores and are working hard to convert others into the same. In internet forums and discussion groups, they attack and denigrate anyone who is opposed to their ideology, often calling them traitors. Traitors to whom? These people seem to forget that their behavior is inconsistent with the values and traditions of this great country and is un-American.
It is quite astonishing that some of these folks who are highly educated and better positioned in the social strata, denigrate Christianity and attack Islam in heinous terms. To intimidate others, they often use the legal system and also threaten actions from the Government of India, such as visa denial or cancellation of OCI Card.
The Indian Diaspora is diverse and comprises many religions, regions, and languages. According to a Pew Research poll, 50% of the Indian Diaspora consists of Non-Hindus. And the majority of the Hindus in this country may also want to live in peace with one another. However, it is unfortunate that a small band of radical Hindutva supporters in this country is in the process of ruining the peace and harmony for everyone else.
Here is a quote from the editorial of the Indian Panorama newspaper that captured the essence of the sentiment of the majority of the Indians who live here: “There is no harm in exercising one’s democratic rights in a democratic country. For long, Khalistanis have been demanding a Khalistan in India. It does not make a difference that there are people here who want a Hindu Rashtra. If the Khalistanis demanding Khalistan are anti-India and enemies of the nation, the same yardstick could be applied to those demanding a Hindu Rashtra. What is the difference? The demands of both the Khalistanis and the Hindutva supporters are divisive and against the interests of India and its 1.3 billion people.
It is unfortunate that Indians who now are citizens of America should attempt to create hatred among people of Indian origin and divide them here in the U.S., where hundreds of ethnicities have learned to live in brotherhood and peace. Aren’t they committing a crime against America and American people? Nobody should be allowed to take advantage of the freedoms offered by the greatest nation on the earth. Nobody should be allowed to practice any form of terrorism in the greatest democracy in the world, which prides itself on the values of freedom and fraternity. President Trump, who has been bold enough to deal with the terrorism of all shades, should find a way to lock up people of foreign origin who promote hatred and create divisions and are a threat to the American National Security.
Nobody should be allowed to take advantage of the freedoms offered by the greatest nation on the earth. Nobody should be allowed to practice any form of terrorism in the greatest democracy in the world, which prides itself on the values of freedom and fraternity. President Trump, who has been bold enough to deal with the terrorism of all shades, should find a way to lock up people of foreign origin who promote hatred and create divisions and are a threat to the American National Security.”