CERRITOS, CA Jagriti held a discussion on the topic ‘Dignity of Hindus in South Asia’ here on Nov 16. The aim was to highlight the sensitive issue of violence against Hindus on the sub –continent. Kamlesh Chauhan, Founder and Chairperson of Jagriti said the status of Hindus in the Indian sub continent was...
Dr. Parvin Syal shared his experience and said the forum was not for bashing any one community and religion but about fundamental rights and expectations.
Dr. Benkin who has visited Bangladesh on several occasions for research said for whatever set of reasons, Hindus in Bangladesh have always found their victimization pushed aside by “more important” matters. They are silent about the millions of Bangladeshi Hindus who face government tolerated atrocities daily; atrocities that include murder, rape , child abduction, forced conversion, religious desecration, and more. Benkin said he met Prime Minister Narendra Modi who assured him that Bangladeshi Hindu refugees are welcome in India .
Amrit Nehru said he is very lucky that he was born in Kashmir and his heart aches when he thinks about what is happening to Kashmir. This is the only state in India where the majority is Muslim and minority is Hindu - the Kashmiri Pundits, who have been violently expelled from their homes. He said it bothered him when the Indian government did not take action and made no attempt to reverse the ethnic cleansing in Kashmir. He said for the first time in 66 years, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is looking into the matter so there is some ray of hope that Kashmir will become an integral part of India. There is no minority commission in Kashmir and the Kashmiri Hindus are deprived of their rights. Ramesh Romanis said that the first problem he faced being a Pakistani Hindu was his name which was of Hindu origin. Many Hindus did not use their names out of fear.Many young Hindu girls have been kidnapped and forcefully converted by marrying them off to Muslim men. If they raised their voices they were harassed. Hindus from Pakistan faced many difficulties to get visa for India to see their families.
The speakers encouraged all to unite and speak out. They were urged to raise this issue with their local politicians so the US government could raise its voice against ethnic cleansing in the Indian sub continent.