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Posted at: Sep 27, 2019, 10:43 PM; last updated: Sep 27, 2019, 10:47 PM (IST)

Indian-American groups protest outside UN headquarters against Modi govt’s policies

Indian-American groups protest outside UN headquarters against Modi govt’s policies
Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrives for his address to the 74th session of the United Nations General Assembly. Reuters

Tribune News Service
New Delhi, September 27

While Prime Minister Narendra Modi eschewed confrontation and belligerence during his address at the UN General Assembly, several Indian-Americans massed outside the UN headquarters to protest his “anti-poor and anti-minority” government, according to a statement by the Coalition Against Fascism in India (CAFI), the lead organiser.

Audrey Truschke, History professor at Rutgers University, said India “has experienced, often personally and painfully, the cataclysmic results of his hateful brand of extreme nationalism — Hindutva”.

Mohammad Jawad, National General Secretary of Indian-American Muslim Council, clarified that the protest was neither anti-India nor anti-Hindu.

“We are only demanding basic human rights that the Constitution of India guarantees for all citizens. The Modi government follows the RSS’ Hindutva ideology which is responsible for all atrocities and lynchings against the minorities. These need to stop and the perpetrators prosecuted,” he said.

“We will keep raising our Hindu voice of protest. As Hindus, as Indians, and as people of conscience, we say ‘not in our name’,” added Sunita Viswanath, Co-Founder of Hindus for Human Rights:

Hawk Newton of Black Lives Matter also joined the protest.

New York-based musician Sunny Jain, who performed at the protests, said PM Modi’s ideology was “simply divisive and inciting aggression towards minorities” while urging all artists and South Asians to raise their voice against hurtful ideologies.

James Sues, Executive Director, Council on America-Islamic Relations (CAIR), said the Modi government had “illegally stripped” the people of Kashmir of their autonomy, and called for a reinstatement of the Indian Constitution’s Article 370.

The CAFI protest is co-sponsored by Alliance for a Democratic and Secular South Asia, Hindus for Human Rights, India Civil Watch and Indian American Muslim Council. 

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