My Fellow Hindus Sued Me for Raising Alarms About Hindu Supremacy

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Hard-line Hindus are demanding that the temple be built on the site where, in 1992, Hindu extremists attacked and demolished the 16th-century Babri mosque, sparking deadly Hindu-Muslim violence. — File photo

My only offense is offering an inclusive and egalitarian Hindu voice in the US.

Sunita Viswanath | Religion News Service

WASHINGTON — I am a co-founder of a 2-year-old advocacy organisation called Hindus for Human Rights. We are a small, nimble nonprofit, with just one full-time staff member and without a physical office.

So you can imagine my surprise when I learned that my colleague Raju Rajagopal (another co-founder of HfHR) and I are being sued by one of the largest, and wealthiest, Hindu organisations in the United States: the Hindu American Foundation.

What had we done?

Raju and I were quoted in two Al Jazeera articles published April 2 and April 8, which reported that right-wing Hindu organisations in the United States had received federal Covid-19 relief funds.

In response, HAF sent us “cease and desist” letters and demanded that we retract our statements and apologise within 24 hours. HAF sent similar letters to leaders of two Muslim and Christian advocacy organisations with whom we work closely, to Al Jazeera and the journalist who wrote the articles, and finally to Audrey Truschke, a professor of South Asian history at Rutgers University.

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