“Many of us need to understand the replacement theory, which has been developed in France, but the Hindu nationalists are using the same type of argument,” said Dr. Hatem Bazian, Professor of Islamic Law and Theology at Zaytuna College. “[They say] that the minorities who are coming to Europe, or the Mexicans who are coming to the United States, are attempting to replace the white race. In a similar way, Hindu nationalists [say] that the Muslims are attempting to replace Hinduism.”
“I [have written] about American political candidates and elected officials and their links or ties, their interactions with the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), especially with their RSS and BJP affiliates here in the US,” said Pieter Friedrich, a freelance journalist specializing in analysis of affairs in South Asia. “Thanks to my relentless efforts to expose the RSS-BJP agenda in India and abroad, I was named in a press conference by Delhi police a year ago, and I am now presumably and sadly banned from India.”
“Hindus everywhere need to stand up and speak up against this really poisonous variant of Hindu nationalism that threatens to destroy not just the wonderful civilization and ethos that is India, but really a lot of communities everywhere in the world,” said Prof. Rohit Chopra, Associate Professor in the Department of Communication at Santa Clara University.
“How can I represent an India where Muslim girls and Muslim women are stripped of their head covering, which is part of their clothing, in the middle of the streets before they step into their schools and colleges? How can I represent an India where Muslim women are sold on an app on other online platforms?” said Dr. Samina Salim, Associate Professor in the College of Pharmacy at the University of Houston. “I do not represent this India where Muslim women are raped, killed, and burned alive. I am not proud of that India. This is an India I did not grow up in; this is an India that I do not identify with.”
The organizers of the event also stressed the importance of international solidarity with Indian Muslims. “Muslims in India, who have contributed so immensely to India’s civilization, are being threatened and assaulted by Hindu extremists,” said Malcolme Morgan, Public Relations Director of Muslim Leadership Council of San Diego. “We must unite together, whether we are Muslim or not, to hold the oppressive Indian government accountable for spreading Islamophobia and inciting violence against Muslims minorities. Our rich heritage as Muslims can be seen from West Africa to East Asia. Unfortunately Muslims in India, who have contributed so immensely to India’s civilization, are being threatened and assaulted by Hindu extremists. We must unite together, whether we are Muslim or not, to hold the oppressive Indian government accountable for spreading Islamophobia and inciting violence against Muslims minorities. This is not merely a case of religious rights being violated. This is an egregious human rights violation that must not be ignored,” added Mr. Morgan.
“Our event… was an important reminder that we must all be vocal and insistent on the need to bring attention to the dire situation of Muslims in India,” said Khalid Alexandre, President of Pillars Of The Community, San Diego.
The San Diego Coalition For Human Rights has reaffirmed its commitment to upholding India’s constitutional values of tolerance, pluralism, and secularism, where the human rights of all communities are upheld