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A Hindu Temple of Samudra Narayan God at Nani Daman Jetty in Daman City, India.

Yes, you read the title correctly. The global Hindu community is under attack. Hinduism is in peril. The epicentre of the attack lies in one of the most so-called liberal countries, the United States. Aside from being a liberal society, the US is also acknowledged as a global superpower, a force to reckon with. The Indian diaspora is among the most affluent and influential communities in the states. Yet a global conference aimed at "exploring the consolidation of Hindu supremacist ideology in India and elsewhere", is being scheduled to be held there.

The so-called international conference is named " Dismantling Global Hindutva " and is aims to scrutinise what Hindutva says and does with regard to a wide range of topics, from caste to political economy, to gender and sexuality, and more. The conference is due to be held on the upcoming second weekend of September 10-12.


The organisers of the conference have firmly stated that they want to remain anonymous but they have released a speakers itinerary. The speaker's list includes names of prominent, well-acclaimed, university professors, research scholars, journalists and a few social activists too.

The Holymen of Pashupati. Photo by Fares Nimri on Unsplash.


Meanwhile, the conference has invoked a barrage of backlash and a slew of criticism from the Hindu diaspora in the states and worldwide. Leading amongst them is Ohio State Senator Niraj Antani. Niraj is the youngest Hindu elected official in the history of the United States and is the first Indian American state senator in Ohio history.

The senator's office released a statement on Tuesday on Twitter condemning the conference. "This conference represents a disgusting attack on Hindus across the United States, and we must all condemn this as nothing more than racism and bigotry against Hindus. I will always stand strong against Hinduphobia," said Niraj Antani in his statement. Furthermore, he emphasised his dismal of the conference by condemning it in the strongest possible terms.

Niraj isn't the only prominent speaker, organization condemning the conference. The Coalition of Hindus of North America (CoHNA) is a grassroots advocacy group representing the Hindu community of North America. The coalition is aimed at protecting the collective interests of the Hindu community by working on the issues faced by them and educating the public about Hindu heritage and tradition. CoHNA too has released a statement vehemently critiquing the proposed conference.

"This conference paints Hindus disproportionately and falsely as purveyors of extremism, actively denies the genocide of Hindu people, and most troublingly, labels those who disagree as 'Hindutva' which the conference organisers define as Hindu extremism," CoHNA said in a statement.

Furthermore, CoHNA stated that "The conference's features the 'Hindutva Harassment Field Manual' as an official resource that categorically states that Hindus have never 'faced systematic oppression throughout history and in present times. This resource also denies that anti-Hindu bias has ever led to 'casualties on horrific scales".

The Coalition of Hindus of North America (CoHNA) is a grassroots advocacy group representing the Hindu community of North America. Photo by Sukhpreet Lotey on Unsplash.


On the opposing end, a group of scholars and members of academic communities, in a joint statement, came out in support of the event.

"The purpose of the Dismantling Global Hindutva conference is to bring together leading scholars in South Asian studies and public commentators on Indian society and politics from around the world in order to discuss the global phenomenon of Hindutva," they stated.

The organizers of the "Dismantling Global Hindutva " conference while being rigid on staying anonymous had earlier stated to the PTI that the primary aim of the conference is to scrutinise what Hindutva says and does with regard to a wide range of topics, from caste to political economy, to gender and sexuality, and more.

Furthermore, they added that such conversations will feature academics, public intellectuals, activists and artists who will speak "carefully and powerfully" to educate the wider public about these issues.

When asked about the timing of the conference the organizers stated that "This conference is held during a time when a Hindu supremacist regime is in power in India, and so this conference will also throw light on what Hindutva does when it has captured state power by closely scrutinising both its official policies, and its unofficial policies like creating impunity for Hindutva violence and setting up a massive propaganda machinery,"

When prodded about the backlash and serious criticism from the Hindu community, the organizers stated that "We categorically reject the idea that critiquing Hindutva is in any way harmful to Hindu students. Indeed, we consider Hindutva to be the most significant threat to Hinduism's pluralist ethos, as well as to efforts to fight ills in Indian society like casteism. That certain groups can't distinguish between a critique of Hindutva and attacks on Hinduism says more about their confusion, affiliation, and desire to defend Hindutva using any rhetoric necessary, than it says about this conference,"


A saffron flag waving pridefully against the dark skies. Photo by Himanshu More on Unsplash.


After a serious backlash from the Indian-American diaspora and the Hindu community, and a barrage of criticism from prominent people, various universities and sponsors have buckled under pressure and withdrew from the conference. The website of the proposed conference (https://dismantlinghindutva.com/) is purportedly under maintenance.

With Afghanistan drooped in radical Islam, Pakistan being too feeble to oppose it, leading it to inadvertently support it. The fertile breeding grounds for Radical Islam is at India's doorsteps. Radical Islamists are in India's foyer. On a concluding note, the Dismantling Global Hindutva conference seems to be a well-planned conspiracy to dent the global image of Hindus and subsequently pique the Radical Islamists, all to gain geopolitical advantage on India.

Keywords: Hinduism, Hindu, Hindutva, radical Islam, Dismantling Global Hindutva conference, Hinduphobia.


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