• Aslam Abdullah

Hindu Fascists in the USA

Hindu fascists are using every possible means available in a liberal democracy to promote authoritarian rule in India based on the Hitler's ideas of racial and religious supremacy


Misusing U.S. liberal democracy to advance ideas in India in defiance of norms respecting human dignity and freedom, Hindu fascists have mobilized their resources in Europe and North America to impose racial and religious superiority over non- upper-caste citizens of India. The 93-page report on Hindu Nationalist Influence in the United States, 2014-2021 The Infrastructure of Hindutva Mobilizing by Jasa Macher

(us.hindu.Nationalism[at]gmail.com ), published in May 2022 gives details of manipulation of U.S. laws, misusing funds, hiding political motives behind religious labels, and transferring millions of U.S. dollars through dubious means to fascist Hindu groups in India to engage in violence against Muslims, and Christians, Sikhs, and Dalits.

The well-documented and well-researched report exposes the violent nature of Hindu fascist groups in the U.S. who have infiltrated various civil society sectors to promote the agenda of Hindu terrorist groups in India responsible for the assassination of Mahatama Gandhi.

This report is a must for every interfaith group, public official, human rights advocate, and activist. It continues an earlier account first launched in 2014, exposing Hindu fascists who have strong tried with white nationalists and Nazi bigots.

The ongoing violence against minorities, termed by world-leading human rights experts as the final stage before committing a full-scale genocide, includes the following.

❖ Lynching and criminalizing minorities (especially Muslims, Dalits, and Christians);

❖ Work, education, and housing discrimination against religious and caste minorities;

❖ Police brutality against Muslims and caste-oppressed communities;

❖ Religion- and caste-based segregation and the targeting of inter-faith families;

❖ Attacking, destroying, and shutting down non-Hindu places of worship;

❖ Targeting movement leaders, journalists, and watchdog groups;

❖ Disintegrating the independence of the judiciary;

❖ Assassinating high-profile critics of Hindu nationalism;

❖ Citizenship law changes that target certain minorities, especially Muslims;

❖ Building "foreigner" detention camps;

❖ Chilling of the freedom of speech and freedom of the press (India ranked 142 out of 180 on the 2020 World Press Freedom Index);

❖ Forms of ethnic cleansing in Assam and genocidal45 actions against Muslim-majority Kashmir.

The fascist Infrastructure of Hindutva, called the Sangh Parivar (Sangh family, or the Sangh), operates a vast social ecosystem throughout India. Fascists have become mainstreamed by winning elections and gaining federal and state governments' control.

They have consolidated power by waging hate campaigns against minorities and critics, cultivating their mythologized history-based information ecosystem.

Hindu fascists abroad fund and support such groups in India through family and youth programs, cultural events, temple-related conferences, charitable funders of education and health projects, and political pressure groups that provide social and political support to Hindutva.

The report uses data mining of tax records and government filings, public statements, websites, news reporting, and maps portions of the Hindu nationalist ecosystem in the United States.

It presents evidence of the Sangh affiliation of selected groups and individuals, and funding flows between different groups, and possible strategies and areas of influence in U.S. social, educational, and political institutions from 2014 to 2021, including Hindu nationalist efforts to:

  1. Cast Sangh groups as cultural gatekeepers and representatives of Hindus, b) fund Sangh groups in India, and c) insert support for Hindutva histories into U.S. academic institutions and textbooks.

  2. Shift U.S. domestic and foreign policy about South Asia, e) finance Sangh-friendly politicians.

  3. Target their critics.

This report also highlights some administrative and financial irregularities in the paperwork of certain Sangh affiliated groups, toward enabling further investigations to determine if there is any misconduct and to understand better how such groups function.

Here are the findings of the report:

1. There are reportedly 222 shakhas (chapters) of the Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh (HSS), the U.S. counterpart of the militant, paramilitary Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), across 32 states and 166 cities in the U.S., operating weekly with an estimated 8,880 participants in its youth and family programming, according to tax records and HSS's 2019-2020 annual report. Its work in 2019-2020 involved 426 other organizations and impacted more than 45,000 families in 198 cities.

2. The Vishwa Hindu Parishad of America reportedly operates 21 chapters in 14 states, according to its website; its cultural projects often use different names, such as the Swami Vivekananda Family Camp or Hindu Mandir Executives Conference (HMEC).

3. Between 2001-2019, according to available tax returns, seven Sangh-affiliated charitable groups reportedly spent at least $158.9 million on their programming, sending much of it to groups in India. The groups studied in this report are:

All India Movement (AIM) for Seva, Ekal Vidyalaya Foundation of America, India Development and Relief Fund, Param Shakti Peeth, PYP Yog Foundation, Vishwa Hindu Parishad of America, and Sewa International.

4. Local journalism in India has connected the work of the Ekal Vidyalaya program in India to the electoral victories of the BJP. The work of the Ekal Vidyalaya Foundation of the USA appears to be linked to a larger pattern of pro-BJP electioneering activities of U.S.-based Hindutva leader Ramesh Shah.

5. The Dharma Civilization Foundation website and news media reported the foundation had offered over $13 million between 2012-2016 toward establishing academic programs or chairs at the Graduate Theological Union (GTU), the University of California at Irvine, and the University of Southern California, with UC Irvine refusing the offered funds. According to tax records and its annual reports, the Uberoi Foundation spent at least $561,000 in the United States between 2010-2016 toward influencing public school textbooks, establishing university endowments, undertaking teacher training programs, distributing research grants, developing educational materials, and funding the VHPA's Hindu University of America toward saffronizing South Asian history. To "saffronize" is to bring an institution or social sector closer to Hindu nationalism.

6. The HSS-affiliated Uberoi Foundation reportedly gave the Hindu American Foundation (HAF) at least $142,000, partly to influence the content of California textbooks from 2012-to 2016, per tax records and annual reports.

7. The U.S.-based Sangh appears to benefit from online abuse and hate campaigns, work-based harassment, where public smear campaigns and petitions are aimed at a faculty member's institution, as well as civil lawsuits and subpoenas that pressure education officials and disincentivize scholars from participating in public processes relevant to their areas of expertise, such as public school textbook revisions.

8. Per the groups' websites and government filings, the Sangh's efforts to platform and amplify Hindutva priorities in U.S. domestic and foreign policy appear to include briefings and meetings held by groups like the Hindu American Foundation and Foundation for India and Indian Diaspora Studies (FIIDS); campaign financing through the Hindu American Political Action Committee (HAPAC, headed by HAF leaders) and individual Sangh-affiliated donors; and through direct lobbying by the Indian government.

9. Per Federal Election Commission filings, from 2012 to 2020, HAPAC reportedly spent more than $172,000 toward influencing U.S. elections.

10. Per Federal Election Commission filings, between 2015-2020, Congressmember Raja Krishnamoorthi reportedly received more than $117,000 from Hindu American Political Action Committee and Sangh-affiliated individuals.

Between 2014-2019, Congressmember and Presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard received at least $110,000. Between 2018-2020, Congressional candidate Srinivas Rao Preston Kulkarni received more than $95,000. Between 2014-2019, Congressmember Brad Sherman received more than $27,000.

11. Per news reporting, the efforts to impact U.S. policies by Sangh-affiliated groups and individuals reportedly included protesting the State Department's visa denial to Narendra Modi; the insertion of Hindu nationalist histories into public school textbooks; and the assertion that India state violence against Kashmiris is an "internal matter" to India.

12. According to Department of Justice filings, between 2017 and 2020, the BJP-led Government of India reportedly paid lobbying groups, on average, between approximately $15,000/month to about $58,000/month each to forward India's interests on matters connected to U.S. policy and academic institutions.

13. Per tax filings, the Bhutada Family Foundation reportedly gave over $1.7 million to Sangh[1]affiliated charities from 2006-to 2018. The Puran Devi Aggarwal Family Foundation allegedly gave over $272,000 to Sangh-affiliated charities from 2008-to 2018. In addition, it has been reported that major donors

connected to the Dharma Civilization Foundation include: Mira and Ajay Shingal, Irma and Ushakant Thakkar, Drs. Harvinder and Asha Sahota and Drs. Meera and Jasvant Modi.

14. In April 2021, Al Jazeera reported five U.S.-based Hindu nationalist groups—Ekal Vidyalaya Foundation of USA, Hindu American Foundation, Infinity Foundation, Sewa International, and Vishwa Hindu Parishad of America—received approximately $833,000 from U.S. federal COVID-19-related funds. The Hindu American Foundation sued several civil society groups in connection with the Al Jazeera article in May 2021.

15. Within or close to the Biden-Harris campaign and administration appear to be individuals with Sangh affiliations, or who have attended Sangh events and thereby conferred legitimacy to U.S. Sangh groups, including Amit Jani, Sonal Shah, Sri Preston Kulkarni, and Vivek Murthy, per news reporting.

16. Through this research, the evidence of possible financial irregularities was noted via government filings and websites, including possible electioneering work by Global Indians for Bharat Vikas, a series of land and money transfers between Vivek Welfare and Education Foundation and other groups, and some multi-million-dollar loans from non-profit groups like the India Development and Relief Fund and Bhutada Family Foundation to other entities. Hindu American Foundation has also appeared to provide material aid to the Pakistan Hindu Refugee Relief Program (PHRRP), a VHP[1]affiliated channel of funds to India whose website states it is not a tax-exempt organization. The evidence was highlighted in this report for further investigation.

17. In January 2022, The Wire began to publish the findings from its two-year investigation into the app Tek Fog, which appears to have links to the BJP and a company with U.S. offices, Persistent Systems. The app was reportedly used in support of the BJP toward the erosion of democratic participation in India by manipulating the information ecosystem available to the citizenry via injecting partisan posts into trending online topics; enabling the automated online abuse of BJP's critics; and invading private citizens' WhatsApp accounts to influence their contacts.

The report has identified Sangh Parivar's institutions, leadership, strategies, funding flows, apparatuses and targets of influence, and their effects in the U.S. and India. However, it's a preliminary report. More research is needed. Additionally, steps are needed to strengthen and build progressive groups to challenge Hindu fascists threatening world peace.

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