Hinduphobic Conference: The name of its speakers and sponsors deserve your attention
A three-day digital conference against Hinduism would begin from Friday. It seems most prominent University in North America (not just the United States) have joined hands. The pretence is it’s against Hindutva but the veil is flimsy and the target is Hinduism as is visible on the very home page of the website for the purpose: dismantlinghindutva.com.
This Conference interests me not because it’s against Hinduism in the garb of Hindutva. We all know Hinduphobia exists but the forces making this Conference possible, with the association of its speakers, American Universities and India’s elite corporates, is disturbing.
So let’s first get this Hindutva-Hinduism prism sorted out. The website has a link where in a piece, Hindutva is equated with elite Hindu-centric ideas. I presume by Hindu elite ideas, they are attacking Brahmins, patriarchy etc. By implication, it’s to stoke the Brahmin-Dalit divide, never mind the prime minister of this country is from OBC and the president of this country is a Dalit. And that majority of this nation, which is Dalits (some 60%) have voted in successive elections for this “Hindutva” government. Just for record, Brahmins in this country is only 4.3% of 1.40 billion population and don't decide an election. They are being Hinduphobic when one is yet to see a single instance of a Hindu who has staged a suicide attack; or hijacked a plane or stoned a woman to death on infidelity.
Interestingly, Hindutva is thrust into centre-stage every-time a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) comes to power in India. West leads a ferocious attack through its academicians, media, NGOs and Capitol Hill/Westminister etc. Their lackeys in India, in similar garb, fed by funds or power or both, spring to life. The narrative is easily understood if a citizens wonders why a Bakrid is worthy of exemption but not an Onam; why a Pehlu or Akhlaq are worthy of front page but not a Kamlesh Tewari; why a Kathua or Hapur rape is outrageous but not hundreds of similar depravities against the Hindus. Just try to remember the front-page Indian Express series on the second phase of pandemic in UP and their complete silence on Kerala where a new bottom is emerging every single day.
Back to this Conference. Do have a look at its website, its speakers and the universities who have joined hands against Hinduism. I could spot a few names who are sworn enemies of Modi, BJP, RSS etc. There is Nandini Sundar who is married to Siddharth Varadarajan, founder of TheWire, notorious at least to my eyes. You have Salil Tripathi and TM Krishna, from the field of letters and music, crows from the same flock. Christopher Jaffrelot and Anand Patwardhan use columns and documentaries to peddle the same agenda.
And then there are Universities. Interestingly, a few of them have received massive grants from India’s elite corporates. In these columns, a story was run a fortnight back which detailed the millions Tatas and Murtys spare for these Universities (both are trustees of the Cornell University). In 2008, Ratan Tata donated $50 million to Cornell University; Rohan Murty, son of Narayan Murthy, props up a Murty Classical Library of India in Harvard; Anand Mahindra has a Mahindra Humanities Center, again for Harvard, which once gifted $10 million to Harvard, and which incidentally is listed as co-sponsor of this controversial event.
A few questions should kick in into the minds of readers straightaway. India sends tens of thousands of its students to US varsities every year; many of whom are Hindus and extremely proud of their heritage. What kind of freedom, scope and prospects they have against hostility of this kind from the very institutions they have sought refuge under for their careers? For their contrarian views, they could be attacked, raped, killed or lynched; boycotted by a society for which their parents, many of suspect financial health, have spent their life’s savings.
And how do we look at our top corporates. A few days ago, Indian Express was outraged that Panchajanya, a RSS-linked magazine, has accused Murthy’s Infosys as being “anti-national” and hand-in-gloves with “Naxals, Leftists and tukde tukde gang”. Express has subsequently moaned why India Inc. is silent. They could’ve done better to dig deeper and find out if these Corporate honchos are indeed sponsoring a few select media houses. For instance, TheWire lists Rohan Murty as having provided Rs 50 lakhs as a grant in 2015. ThePrint has received an undisclosed funding from Infosys founders, NR Narayana Murthy and Nandan Nilekani. Ratan Tata’s name too figure here. There is one Independent and Public Spirited Media Foundation (IPSMF). Have a look at its trustees some of whom are known Modi-baiters. The irony is these media houses pick on “suit-boot ki sarkar” aspersion on Modi with glee while being propped by “suit-boot” donors themselves. There are some other very big corporates and Bollywood stars in the list of sponsors.
It tells you the kind of threat Hinduism faces for its existence. That it survives is not because of India’s urbanites who either are unconcerned or brainwashed by this matrix of academic and media of all kind: digital, electronic, print or social. Hinduism survives because the heart of India, its masses, is still connected to the soil of this nation.
Meanwhile this Hinduphobic conferences and its sponsors and lackeys are busy 24x7 into doing their filth.
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