A few powerful statements ( Courtesy of Lalit Jha)
In her keynote address, Nadine Maenza, vice-chair of the USCIRF, noted with alarm the social and economic boycott of Muslims in some parts of the country as well as discrimination against Muslims in the context of medical treatment during the global pandemic, the IAMC said in a statement on Friday.
Dr Harrison Akins, South Asia policy analyst with the USCIRF, alleged that the ruling BJP is using the symbols of Hinduism and policies aimed at their protection as weapons against the minority communities in their quest to further marginalise the religious minorities and shape a Hindu nation.
Francisco Bencosme, Asia Pacific Advocacy Manager of Amnesty International USA, expressed concern over activists imprisoned for peaceful dissent, mentioning Safoora Zargar, a pregnant student arrested in connection with an anti-Citizenship Amendment Act protests in New Delhi. While the world faces a global pandemic, India has decided that now is the time to attack religious freedom, he alleged.
The event was organized by the Indan American Muslim Council in association with the International Christian Concern and Hindus for Human Rights.
Lalit, thanks for the above, a few more statements followed by my opinion.
Sunita Vishwanath, an activist from Hindus for Human rights said, “We who are advocating against Hindutva ideology and discriminatory laws like CAA/NRC are doing so out of love for Hinduism and India, both of which are inclusive and expansive.”
Raju Rajagopal from the same organization added, “We are NOT marching toward a Hindu Rashtra; we are marching toward a Hindutva Rashtra.”
Matias Perttula of the international Christian coalition had this to say, “The persecution of Christians and religious minorities in India has been increasing since Modi and BJP came to power in 2014. It is encouraging to see that India is recommended to CPC status by USCIRF. Now is the time to appeal to India to cultivate greater religious pluralism and steer away from the Hindutva agenda.”
The bad things happening in India are not a part of Hindu teachings. We have been super careful about separating the two in the following article: http://centerforpluralism.com/hindutva-is-not-hinduism/
The supremacist ideology should be repulsive to those who believe that all humans are created equal. The Al-Qaeda, ISIS, Nazi, KKK, and Hindutva ideologies have disturbed the peace and harmony in Afghanistan, Iraq, Germany, the USA, and India respectively. Taken to its fullest extent, the Hindutva (not Hinduism) coupled with the Manu Smriti dehumanizes Indian women and Dalits, as well as Christians, Muslims, and other minorities.
The Government of India needs to repeal the CAA and restore freedom to the people of Kashmir to honor the dignity of Indians and also earn respect from the community of nations if we want to be a leading civilized nation in the world.
The intent of passing the CAA was mala fide. There was no need for this act, all they had to do was give citizenship to the persecuted minorities from around the world. The irony is the government says that there are no persecuted Muslims in India from the neighboring nations, then why deliberately exclude Muslims from the act if there were none?
The Indian Muslims and Christians welcome the persecuted Hindus, Sikhs, and others; it would make us proud of our motherland to provide safe space to the victims of prejudice anywhere in the world. Our greatness would be greater if our leaders act in good faith, befriend, and influence our neighbors so we don’t have this problem.
Demanding birth certificates and parents’ birth certificate is to identify all those who do not have these documents. I bet Modi does not have a birth certificate, nor his mother or his abandoned wife. I don’t have one, and a lot of Indians born between 1947 and 1952 don’t have it either, however many of us have two birthdays, including me.
Those who do not have the birth certificate, and are Muslims will go to the concentration camps, and all others get automatic citizenship. The intention of the law is disingenuous.
If the US economy goes down the tube, Trump’s base will resent Indians who are taking their jobs and doing well. It happened when Microsoft and other companies fired the Americans and outsourced the work to Indians. We have the sparks under control now. If Trump gets reelected, he will do anything to appease his base. It will happen if the economy tanks.
Ominous murmurs are circulating that if India forces its Christians to convert to Hinduism, kicks them out, or allows them to live as second-class citizens, then we must do the same, kick the Indians out of America. If Muslims continue to bear the brunt of Hindutva (not Hindu) hatred, the Arab countries may get rid of some 5 Million Indians who bring nearly a $100 billion to India. It will add to the massive unemployment. Indians stand to lose and chaos will follow.
I can see the absurdity of ‘some’ of the BJP members in India. Their words are dangerous, and Modi has not condemned them either, and if the good Indians do nothing about it, they will continue to create an environment of distrust leading to an unstable India. The Indian economy and the social fabric of the nation will be destroyed. I trust in the goodness of Indians, and hopeful that they will ask Modi to do the right thing.
What is difficult to understand is the stinky attitudes of a “few” Indian Americans who are rejoicing with what is happening to Muslims and Christians in India. Shame on them.
The CAA is bad for India, bad for Muslims and bad for the Dalits. More importantly, it is terrible for the very people supporting it. The protests will continue unless the CAA is repealed or modified. Millions of Indians who got it good in the last twenty years stand to lose. Major corporations will withdraw if they see a continuance of chaotic discriminative and an unstable nation. All of us lose.
Every Indian American loves his/her motherland, to think otherwise is venomous and a sign of stupidity. Those Indians need to clean their hearts and minds. America is a great country, and they need to live by its ideals of liberty and freedom.
I appeal to those few Indian Americans who care about India to get their act together and urge Modi to repeal the CAA, and allow the USCIRF commissioners to go on a fact-finding mission. What do we have to hide? Let Modi listen to their reports and correct the wrongs and not go down in history as the man who destroyed India.
We have to save India, although it is not our country anymore, it is our motherland, and we owe her a debt of gratitude.
God bless India.
Mike Ghouse is the founder and president of the Center for Pluralism. He is a speaker, thinker, author, consultant, pluralist, activist, newsmaker, and an interfaith wedding officiant. He is committed to building cohesive societies and offers pluralistic solutions to the media and the policymakers. www.TheGhousediary.com