PRESS CENTER: CAIR-Chicago Condemns Assault on Protestors at World Hindu Congress
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CAIR-Chicago Issues Statement Condemning Assault on Protesters at World Hindu Congress
The Chicago office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-Chicago) today condemned the violent actions against six protesters affiliated with Chicago South Asians for Justice at the World Hindu Congress on September 7th, 2018.
The World Hindu Congress (WHC) was an event aimed at praising figures like Mohan Bhagwat, who is the chair of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), a militant, Hindu supremacist group in India criticized for its fascist leanings. At their event, WHC participants allegedly choked, kicked, and spat on protestors.
“As a US citizen and person with caste and religious privilege, I put my body on the line as an expression of solidarity with people whose immigration status, caste, religious beliefs, or other identities put them at risk of violence every single day,” said protester affiliated with Chicago South Asians for Justice who asked to remain anonymous. “Facing angry mobs and being arrested for peaceful protest is not something to be glamorized. The increasing normalization of fascism is a disturbing reality and demands attention.”
In July of this year, India’s government, currently under Hindu nationalist control, updated the National Register of Indians (NRC) to strip four million people in the state of Assam of their citizenships. The majority of those affected were Muslim.
“It is important for us, as an advocacy group defending Muslims, to stand up against extremists groups that put Muslims' safety, and others’ safety, in danger,” CAIR-Chicago Communications Coordinator Saadia Pervaiz said. “We are in no way condemning the Hindu faith, but we are working to stop extremism in any shape or form. When it becomes institutionalized in a government meant to serve the people, the situation becomes much more dire.”
CAIR-Chicago is the Chicago office of America’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Our mission is to defend civil rights, fight bigotry, and promote tolerance.
CONTACT: CAIR-Chicago Executive Director Ahmed Rehab, 202-870-0166, firstname.lastname@example.org; CAIR-Chicago Communications Coordinator Saadia Pervaiz, 312-212-1520, email@example.com; CAIR-Chicago Communications Coordinator Asha Binbek, 312-212-1520, firstname.lastname@example.org