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Muslim Americans oppose House resolution against Hinduphobia

The weaponization of Hinduphobia causes tangible harm not just to American minorities but also to elected officials, activists, journalists,” says IAMC president Mohammad Jawad

Indian American Congressman Shri Thanedar addressing a news conference in Washington DC on Hinduphobia / Image- X/@HinduACT

A Muslim American group has opposed the anti-Hinduphobia resolution introduced in the House of Representatives by Indian American Rep Shri Thanedar.

The resolution “condemns Hinduphobia, anti-Hindu bigotry and hate, and intolerance.” At a press conference held at the National Press Club of India in Washington DC  on April 15 Thanedar said that the sudden increase in attacks against Hindus in the US was just the “beginning of a coordinated anti-Hindu attack”.

“Today I am seeing in the United States a substantial increase of attacks on Hinduism. A lot of misinformation is being circulated whether it is online or otherwise,” Thanedar told reporters at a news conference organized by non-profit HinduACtion.

A day later on April 16, Indian American Muslim Council (IAMC) warned that the resolution can and will be weaponized against critics to shut down criticism of Hindu nationalism or Hindutva.

“No one should ignore the fact that this resolution has been backed by American Hindu far-right groups, some of which have ties to violent anti-minority militant groups in India. The weaponization of Hinduphobia causes tangible harm not just to American minorities – including Muslims, Dalits, and Indian Christians – but also to elected officials, activists, journalists, and academics who are smeared as hateful bigots for daring to criticize Hindu supremacy,” IAMC president Mohammad Jawad said in a statement.

IAMC said while the celebration of Hindu heritage and contributions to society are welcome, Indian American activists have long warned that accusations of ‘Hinduphobia’ have been used to harass, intimidate, smear, and otherwise cause harm to anyone who criticizes Hindutva’s fascist ideals, the discriminatory policies of India’s far-right government, and dangerous expansion and activities of US-based Hindu far-right groups.

According to IAMC, prominent Hindu American activists including Hindus for Human Rights have also rejected the idea of Hinduphobia as a form of structural discrimination in the United States. “We reject the notion of systemic ‘Hinduphobia’ in the United States or India with any equivalence to Islamophobia or anti-Semitism,” the group wrote.

“We recognize that the term ‘Hinduphobia’ has been popularized among Hindu nationalist groups in the United States – not by persecuted Hindu populations in Pakistan or Bangladesh… we emphasize that mere criticism of caste, Hindu nationalism, or Hinduism itself – especially when it comes from marginalized communities – should not be construed as anti-Hindu sentiment,” it said.

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