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Hightower High School
Happy New Year 2023 🌹🌼🌹
- Our team successfully stopped caste resolutions at Tufts University (among others) and worked with concerned Hindu students.
- We launched Campus Hinduphobia Tracker in collaboration with Understanding Hinduphobia to amplify 50+ student experiences.
- We supported students at Loyola University Chicago to pass a resolution recognizing Hinduphobia in Student Government.
- We signed a letter to George Washington University with 10+ diverse campus organizations to investigate Hinduphobia on campus after a Hindu student experienced anti-Hindu harassment by a faculty member.
- We supported educational initiatives on campus to raise awareness about Hindu persecution such as the Kashmiri Hindu genocide.
- We partnered with Hindu YUVA, HSC, and CoHNA for campus education about Hinduism.
UCLA’s Bruin Hindus and India Policy Forum hosts Anupam Kher for a conversation on Kashmiri Hindus. We worked together with students to amplify event coverage.
- Lancaster University
Lancaster’s Hindu Society hosted an event on Kashmiri Hindu ethnic cleansing. We worked together with students to amplify event coverage.
George Washington University
- Students at the George Washington University faced numerous accounts of racist, Hinduphobic, and misogynist remarks by a professor teaching a Hinduism course. When the student tried to encourage a discussion about Hindu texts and history, the teacher accused them of being an “ideologue of the BJP”. The professor was reported to have exhibited a high temper when challenged on his views but the university did not provide any support. HOC ultimately wrote a joint solidarity letter with various organizations at GW which reached over 1k likes.
- Loyola University Chicago becomes the second American institution to adopt the working definition of Hinduphobia
- We wrote an Open Letter to the Tufts Administration and Diversity Office in response to the attempt by Tufts South Asian Political Action Committee to pass a Caste Resolution. We worked with Tufts students to file a bias incident in response to a hostile environment on campus. As a result of our efforts, Tufts did not pass a caste resolution.
- Campus Hinduphobia Tracker
In collaboration with Understanding Hinduphobia, we announced the initiation of the Campus Hinduphobia Tracker. The intent has been to collect data on Hinduphobia on campus and in schools in an academic fashion, whether that be in the US, UK, Canada, or Australia.
- Cal State University System
[Explain what happened] : The caste policies implemented by the Cal State University system further targeted Hindu religious festivals on campus under the guise of “Anti-Caste” activism. Hence, we called attention to such caste-based policies circulating around campuses such as events protesting Holi through alarmingly claiming it to be castetism — all by the promotion of an organization called “Students Against Hindutva Ideology.”
Furthermore, Hinduphobia encompasses various elements of hate out of which one of them includes campus policies revolving around caste. Thus, towards the end of January, our team created an infographic that spotlighted such policies along with the negative environment it creates for Hindu students; ranging from the targeting of Hindu festivals such as Holi and declaring it as “casteist” to the recognition of caste as a protected category by the UC Davis’s student assembly. Ultimately, we shed light on how these caste policies attempt to subjugate Hindus to caste.
We developed a partnership with The Vishwas Project, an Australian Hindu initiative, to end Hinduphobia on Australian campuses
- Texas A&M
In response to Hindu Students facing harassment at Texas A&M and a resolution by student government to recognize Hindu heritage month, we created infographics to support
- UC Davis
While the Hindu student community celebrated Diwali, a student-led magazine called “Other Collective” at UC Davis called to stop celebrations on the basis that it is inherently violent and promoted caste discrimination. This immediately led us to launch a campaign to the UC Davis student government and administration; the post was deleted and a half-hearted apology was issued.
- Dismantling Global Hindutva Conference
After receiving news of the Dismantling Global Hindutva Conference, our investigation and video researching the organizers of the conference garnered more than 160,000 views collectively on social media. We thoroughly investigated and brought up essential questions: who were the speakers, what materials the conference shared, and what was said at the conference about Hinduism? Our team worked tirelessly with Hindu students across campuses nationally in order to initiate a conversation with their administration about the Dismantling Global Hindutva Conference.
Following Hinduphobic remarks made by faculty at Cambridge University, our UK team assisted students at the University of Cambridge with shedding light on the Hinduphobic remarks and standing against bigotry
- Students Against Hindutva Ideology
Our research team began investigating Students Against Hindutva Ideology (SAHI), a group that intimidated Hindu students on campuses and held political protests during Hindu religious festivals. Upon the research performed, we uncovered a groundbreaking fact — those who SAHI idolized, pledged support for terrorists responsible for the mass killings of Hindus. Hence, in August, we promptly released an investigative report which critically exposed SAHI’s support for terrorism and creating a Hinduphobia environment on campus by intimidating Hindu students.
- UC Davis
The Indian Student Association of UC Davis posted for Hindu Persecution Awareness Month. Following this, students received messages that gaslit Hindu persecution and were compelled into deleting the post. Correspondingly, our investigation team uncovered a pattern of Hinduphobia at UC Davis; our actions led the ISA at UC Davis to apologize to the Hindu community for neglecting their voices on campus.
- Tufts University
The Hindu Chaplain at Tufts University was harassed by several South Asian organizations for speaking against Hinduphobia. After our investigation team responded to this, Tufts Daily, the student newspaper, deleted their tweets and their article harassing the chaplain. We also maintained written communication preceding the letters we sent to the Tufts Administration.
- Indiana University
On 29th April 2021, A Hindu student, Rama Sardar, at Indiana University resigned from their school newspaper. Rama had written an opinion piece titled “Why did the Indiana University Islamic Studies Program Tweet in Support of a Hinduphobic Professor?” with regards to Hinduphobia at Rutgers University. After the article’s publication, the Islamic Studies Program Director complained that the article portrayed the director in “unfavorable light.” Consequently, Indiana Daily Student unpublished Sardar’s article. This move was endorsed by Audrey Truschke in a deleted tweet. Our team assisted in supporting Sardar in telling her story.
- Cal State University
[Explain what happened] : On April 10, 2021, The Cal State Student Association passed a resolution which resulted in the inclusion of “caste” as a category of protected class within their anti-discrimination policy. We immediately called on them to rescind this resolution [source] — while we stand against any and all discrimination, including caste discrimination, this resolution called on the destruction of Hinduism through the immense targeting of Hindu students and accused Hindus of being casetist solely for their identity.
- Rutgers University
Our first case was at Rutgers University: Hindu students faced Hinduphobic discrimination by Audrey Truschke, an associate professor at Rutgers University. Truschke tweeted that Ram, a Hindu god, was a “misogynistic pig”, blamed Hindus for Capitol Riots, accused the Bhagavad Gita of rationalizing mass slaughter and more. Through our evidence based campaign, we worked with Hindu students at Rutgers to begin a petition, which exceeded 6,000 signatories from Hindu students, allies, campus organizations and more. In response to inaction from Rutgers, the hashtag #RacistRutgers trended on Twitter calling for action. Rutgers apologized to the Hindu community for failing to address concerns and students came together to form an action plan to address Hinduphobia. Following the Understanding Hinduphobia Conference hosted by Rutgers Hindu Students Council, the Rutgers University Student Assembly passed resolution RS 15S21-1 Resolution to Condemn Hinduphobia & Co-Sponsor “Understanding Hinduphobia” Conference – becoming the first U.S. university to adopt the working definition of Hinduphobia. Read Full [Link to Rutgers case specific Audrey Truschke
- Oxford University
Rashmi Samant was an Indian Hindu student pursuing graduate studies at the University of Oxford. On 16th February 2021, Rashmi was forced to resign as President from the Student Union due to accusations based on social media posts made as a teenager. Following this, on February 17 2021, Dr. Abhijit Sarkar, a faculty member from the University of Oxford, screenshotted images of her parents Facebook profile pictures and posted it to his personal instagram, accusing Rashmi of being a part of far right groups. Following this, Rashmi faced Hinduphobic hate messages and harassment online. In response, the HOC team quickly mobilized to begin a social media campaign in support of Rashmi and sign a letter to Oxford University, calling on them to take disciplinary action. We created educational materials through videos (collectively 100k+ views + impressions) and a letter in support of Rashmi. On July 17, 2021, Oxford University concluded their investigation into Sarkar and ruled in favor of Rashmi.