July 18, 2024

Qazi Mizan: It was reported this week that a Democratic Party unit in a New Jersey town has passed a resolution calling out the US-based Hindutva outfits as “domestic branches” of “foreign hate groups”. The resolution names several right-wing Hindu groups—such as the Hindu American Foundation (HAF), the Vishwa Hindu Parishad of America (VHPA), SEWA International, Infinity Foundation and Ekal Vidyalaya Foundation—among the outfits that practise Hindu supremacism in the United States.

Passed by the Teaneck Democratic Municipal Committee (TDMC), the resolution urges US senators and congressmen from New Jersey to ask the FBI and CIA to step up their research on these foreign hate groups that enjoy tax-exempt status in the US. These organisations have infiltrated all levels of politics and were highly effective in blocking US House Resolution 417 which was a congressional attempt to warn against the Hindu nationalist movement. The resolution also called on India to protect the rights and freedoms of religious minorities and asked the US government to include the matter as part of the bilateral strategic dialogue. This of course has not happened as the US has continued to turn a blind eye to the fascistic ideology of the BJP government as the bilateral is primarily dominated by economic and strategic interests.

The TDMC has claimed that US-based right-wing Hindu groups had direct and indirect ties to Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), the right-wing Hindu nationalist paramilitary organisation in India whose ideology is part of Nazism and European fascism. What is also concerning is the fact that extremists who routinely spew venomous hate towards minorities in India are invited to speak at large events and temples in the US. In addition to this, Hindu extremists have issued death and rape threats to US academic scholars who have attempted to raise awareness and talk about the perils of the Hindutva ideology.

The resolution also goes to the extent of urging the US Department of State to designate India as a Country of Particular Concern, as recommended by the US Commission on International Religious Freedom. It is encouraging to see that awareness is growing regarding the reality of the BJP and its supporters. If these extremists are such a concern to people residing in the US, perhaps they will be forced to reckon with the reality of minorities being oppressed under the BJP government in India. Islamabad has been amplifying this concern for a while now, and the hope is that more countries around the world wake up from their slumber.


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