Substantial increase in attack on Hindus in US, says PIO Congressman Shri Thanedar

Observing that there is a substantial increase in attacks against Hindus in the United States, Indian-American Congressman Shri Thanedar has said that this phase is just the “beginning of a co-ordinated anti-Hindu attack”, and has asked community members to unite against hate crimes.

US politician Shri Thanedar
PIO Congressman Shri Thanedar, representative of Michigan. Screenshot courtesy: Instagram/repshrithanedar

These remarks by Shri Thanedar, representative of Michigan, came during a news conference held at the National Press Club in Washington yesterday.

“Today, I am seeing in the United States a substantial increase in attacks on Hinduism. A lot of misinformation is being circulated, whether it is online or otherwise,” he said.

Thanedar and four other Indian-American lawmakers — Ro Khanna, Raja Krishnamoorthi, Ami Bera, and Pramila Jayapal — have recently written to the US Department of Justice seeking an investigation into the recent surge in attacks on Hindu temples and places of worship.

At the press conference organised by HinduAction, a non-profit body, Thanedar lamented that no action had been taken against those responsible for the attacks and no arrests were made either.

“We have experienced substantially more events of this kind in recent months. I have a feeling that this is just the beginning of a very co-ordinated attempt against this [Hindu] community and the community must stand together. The time has come and I will stand with you,” he said.

“Having practised Hinduism, having grown up as a Hindu in a Hindu household, I know what Hinduism is. It is a very peaceful religion,” he said, adding that it was not a religion that attacked others.

However, this community continued to be misrepresented, misunderstood, sometimes deliberately, he said. “I recently joined four of my Indian-American colleagues to write to the Department of Justice. You know, one of the concerns that we had was the rising attacks on places of worship,” Thanedar said.

“We’ve seen [attacks] happening in California, we have seen those happening all the way in New York and all across America. It appears to be a very co-ordinated effort to attack these places of worship, which has created a lot of fear in the community,” he said, alleging that these investigations often went nowhere.

He said that there was a need to co-ordinate efforts between the local law enforcement, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Department of Justice.

“A higher priority needs to be assigned to such hate crimes against this peaceful community,” he said. “That is what we have asked the Justice Department to do and it is time for the whole community to come together and make sure that we demand equality, that we demand justice. We will not tolerate such hate against Hinduism.”