Fanatic Hindu groups spread tentacles in U.S. universities


Hindu hardline groups are active in at least 40 U.S. universities operating under different names and are busy spreading “communal feelings” in the Indian community, says a sociologist from New York

Aditi Desai, a former lecturer at Delhi University, has studied Hindu-Muslim relations closely. Based in New York, Desai is a consultant for the U.N. and is an active worker on issues relating to civil society, gender and environment.Desai was in the capital as part of a 13-member “Sadbhavna” (amity) delegation that toured Gujarat after sectarian violence rocked the western state claiming at least 1,000 lives, mainly of Muslims.
“These cells with strong leanings to the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) and Bajrang Dal are teaching young minds to hate. Communal feelings are spreading among the NRI community in the U.S. You can almost feel it in the air,” Desai said “Funds for these organisations are also coming in substantial amounts from all across the world.

“After the Gujarat earthquake last year, Indians in the U.S. regardless of caste and creed contributed generously to support the reconstruction process. But this time finances have not been forthcoming for victims of the communal violence.”In one city in the U.S. where 1,400 families of Indian origin reside, only $700 was raised. It shows communal divisions have sprouted in the U.S. too.”

The Gujarat violence was blamed mainly on the VHP and Bajrang Dal, both of which are closely linked to the Bharatiya Janata Party, which rules Gujarat. Along with the RSS, India’s most influential Hindu group, all these groups are collectively known as the “Sangh Parivar”. On her experiences in Gujarat, Desai said: “What we saw was thousand times worse than what we had imagined. It was total horror and a quantum leap from what communal violence we had seen in the country before.

“The people in the relief camps comprising mainly Muslims are totally helpless and despondent even to protest. Not surprisingly we found no feeling or expression of vengeance or anger on the part of the Muslims. “Their backs are broken – something the VHP promised to do. I already see the beginning of a Bosnia here. “What was more alarming was the language of terror – it was a total debasement of humanity. This language could not have been taught in a day. Even the pattern of violence was the same everywhere. Much preparation had gone into it. It could not have been spontaneous.

“Hindus who helped Muslim victims, the administration, the press – everyone was intimidated. And even now, there is no food and livelihood for the people in the relief camps. Not one guilty person has been caught.” Desai added: “But there is a larger task at hand now. India is in a state of siege. People abroad think groups like VHP has the support of 80 percent Hindus in India, whereas its support base it is not more than 20 percent. That has to be exposed.”


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