Indian American Muslim Council

Washington, DC (February 01, 2022) – More than 60 civil society organizations from 11 countries and nearly a dozen prominent individuals have released a statement in support of the Indian American Muslim Council (IAMC), terming the baseless and false allegations leveled by the Indian Government against the organization as Islamophobic.

“[W]e have seen a barrage of attacks on the event and its organizers by Indian political and media figures alike, as well as the Indian government’s Ministry of External Affairs. These attacks have manifested almost exclusively in the from of a vile, Islamophobic smear campaign directed against the Indian American Muslim Council (IAMC), which has been baselessly accused of being sponsored by the Pakistani government and having links to terrorist organizations,” the statement said.

“These disgusting accusations, which are primarily being peddled by a Hindutva-affiliated fake news outlet, have already been thoroughly refuted by IAMC, and do not deserve to be dignified by any further response.”

Full text of the statement:

On January 26, 2022—India’s 73rd Republic Day—an interfaith coalition of 17 organizations organized a Special Congressional Briefing on “Protecting India’s Pluralist Constitution.” The event featured recorded remarks by members of the United States Congress, senior leaders from top human rights advocacy organizations, and the former Vice President of India Hamid Ansari, among others. Speakers at the event shared their well wishes for the Republic of India on its Republic Day, and discussed the rising threats to the secular, pluralist vision expressed in the Indian Constitution.

The briefing was hosted by: Hindus for Human Rights, Indian American Muslim Council, Amnesty International USA, Genocide Watch, 21Wilberforce, International Christian Concern, Jubilee Campaign, Dalit Solidarity Forum, New York State Council of Churches, Federation of Indian American Christian Organizations of North America, India Civil Watch International, Students Against Hindutva Ideology, Center for Pluralism, American Muslim Institution, International Society for Peace and Justice, Association of Indian Muslims of America, and the Humanism Project (Australia).

In the days since this Special Congressional Briefing, we have seen a barrage of attacks on the event and its organizers by Indian political and media figures alike, as well as the Indian government’s Ministry of External Affairs. These attacks have manifested almost exclusively in the from of a vile, Islamophobic smear campaign directed against the Indian American Muslim Council (IAMC), which has been baselessly accused of being sponsored by the Pakistani government and having links to terrorist organizations.

These disgusting accusations, which are primarily being peddled by a Hindutva-affiliated fake news outlet, have already been thoroughly refuted by IAMC, and do not deserve to be dignified by any further response. Such allegations play into the same tired Islamophobic tropes that have been weaponized against Muslims both in India and abroad for decades, and we unequivocally condemn them as the hateful propaganda that they are.

The broad coalition of 17 organizations that organized Wednesday’s Special Congressional Briefing included Hindu, Muslim, and Christian organizations alike, as well as some of the world’s leading international human rights advocacy groups. The fact that those attacking this event have singled out IAMC—the largest advocacy organization of Indian Muslims in America, and our close and trusted partner in the fight for global human rights—as a target, while ignoring the 16 other diverse organizations that came together to host this powerful event, is proof that the so-called “patriotism” of these far-right media and political figures is nothing more than blatant Islamophobia, and should be forcefully and explicitly condemned as such.

The forces of Hindu extremism and the far-right government in India want to divide us along communal and religious lines. We refuse to allow them to do so.

The swiftness, scale, and severity of the attacks against IAMC only serves to highlight the critical message, delivered loud and clear by the speakers at Wednesday’s briefing, that Muslims and other minorities in India face increasingly dire threats to their safety and security—threats that are compounded when they dare to speak up against growing hatred and intolerance. As partners in the fight to defend the secular, pluralist democracy guaranteed in the Indian Constitution, we stand in firm and unyielding solidarity with our comrades at the Indian American Muslim Council in the face of this baseless smear campaign.

ORGANIZATIONAL SIGNATORIES

1.     Hindus for Human Rights (USA)

2.     People Against Apartheid and Fascism (South Africa)

3.     Palo Alto Legal Group, P.C. (USA)

4.     Solidarity Belgium (Belgium)

5.     Aotearoa Alliance of Progressive Indians (New Zealand)

6.     The Humanism Project (Australia)

7.     India Solidarity Germany (Germany)

8.     Wisconsin Alliance for Civil Rights in India (USA)

9.     German Indian Alliance for Peace (Germany)

10.                        International Council of Indian Muslims (Worldwide)

11.                        The Crescent Hub (Kuwait)

12.                        Kaur Republic Media Group (USA)

13.                        MCC (USA)

14.                        Scottish Indians for Justice (UK)

15.                        Meet a Muslim (USA)

16.                        Center for Pluralism (USA)

17.                        GreenFaith (USA)

18.                        Indian Muslim Association of Carolinas (USA)

19.                        Poetic Justice Foundation (Canada)

20.                        Justice for All Canada (Canada)

21.                        New York State Council of Churches (USA)

22.                        Jewish Voice for Peace (USA)

23.                        The Liberal Indians – France (France)

24.                        Justice For All (USA)

25.                        Boston South Asian Coalition (USA)

26.                        Tawheed Center (USA)

27.                        Islamophobia Studies Center (USA)

28.                        CAPI (USA)

29.                        Hindus for Human Rights-ANZ (Australia/New Zealand)

30.                        Association of Indian Muslims of America (USA)

31.                        Treasure Coast Interfaith Community (USA)

32.                        Ambedkar King Study Circle (USA)

33.                        International Solidarity for Academic Freedom in India (Worldwide)

34.                        Students Against Hindutva Ideology (USA)

35.                        Chicago Coalition for Human Rights in India  (USA)

36.                        United Madrassi Association Inc (USA)

37.                        Khudai Khidmatgar (India)

38.                        Black Lives Matter Of Greater New York (USA)

39.                        International Network of Democratic Indians Abroad (UK)

40.                        Amnesty International USA (USA)

41.                        BhaktiVersity (India)

42.                        Sadhana: Coalition of Progressive Hindus (USA)

43.                        Hindus for Human Rights-UK (UK)

44.                        AwaazNetwork Facebook Page

45.                        Dalit Solidarity Forum (USA)

46.                        Genocide Watch (USA)

47.                        Federation of Indian American Christian Organizations of North America (USA)

48.                        National Solidarity Forum (India)

49.                        Interfaith Assembly on Homelessness and Housing (USA)

50.                        Friends of India – Texas (USA)

51.                        Voices Against Fascism in India (USA)

52.                        Mahatma Gandhi Foundation (India)

53.                        Turbine Bagh (UK)

54.                        Mahdavia Islamic Center of Chicago (USA)

55.                        Masjid al Huda (USA)

56.                        Iman Publications

57.                        International Commission for Dalit Rights (USA)

58.                        India Justice Project, Berlin (Germany)

59.                        Ambedkar International Center (USA)

60.                        India Civil Watch International (India)

61.                        Periyar International (USA)

62.                        Canadians Against Oppression And Persecution (Canada)

63.                        Parity (USA)

 

INDIVIDUAL SIGNATORIES

(Institutional affiliation is provided for identification purposes only and does not constitute institutional endorsement.)

 

1.     John Dayal, Writer and Activist (India)

2.     Fr. Cedric Prakash, Jesuit priest and human rights activist (India)

3.     Arjun Sethi, Civil rights lawyer (USA)

4.     Martha Nussbaum, Philosopher and Professor at the University of Chicago School of Law (USA)

5.     Shivam Bhatt, Hindu Priest (USA)

6.     Audrey Truschke, historian and Associate Professor of South Asian History at Rutgers University (USA)

7.     Rohit Chopra, Associate Professor of Communication, Santa Clara University (USA)

8.     Wendy Doniger, Scholar of Indian history and Professor at the University of Chicago (USA)

9.     Ambassador Islam Siddiqui, American Muslim Institution (USA)

10.                        Ruchira Gupta, Red Rose Campaign (India)

11.                        Apoorvanand, Scholar and Writer (India)

12.                        Anand Patwardhan, Documentary filmmaker (India)

13.                        Nandita Haksar, Human rights lawyer (India)

14.                        Safoora Zargar, Student activist leader, Jamia Millia Islamia (India)

 

 

Indian American Muslim Council is the largest advocacy organization of Indian Muslims in the United States with chapters across the nation. For more information, please visit our website at: www.iamc.com

 

 


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