|Protest the Visit of
Modi, the Chief Architect of Gujarat Pogroms
We are appalled that the Asian-American Hotel Owners Association
and Association of Indian Americans for North America are
honoring Mr. Narendra Modi, the Chief Minister of the state of
Gujarat, India. AAHOA's adulation of Mr. Modi as the "Man for
the 21st century for Gujarat" and as "a master political
strategist, a firebrand agitator, an able administrator, an
extraordinary orator" is deeply troubling and makes us wonder if
this is an attempt to whitewash his role in the Gujarat pogrom.
Mr.Modi and his state apparatus have been indicted by reputable
Indian and International human rights organizations for their
sponsorship of and complicity in the ethnic cleansing and
pogroms against the Muslim community in Gujarat during February
- March 2002 where thousands of people were killed and made
refugees, hundreds of women and young girls were brutally raped
and tortured, and religious places of worship were defiled and
destroyed. Mr.Modi's government has targeted Muslims, Christians
and secular Hindus before and after the 2002 Gujarat pogrom.
By honoring Mr. Modi AIANA and AAHOA dishonor the victims of the
Gujarat pogrom, and insult the moral dignity of all. Furthermore
it raises questions about the current AAHOA leadership's
commitment to secularism and pluralism.
Mr. Modi's government has systematically prevented victims and
survivors of the genocide from attaining redress from the state
judiciary. Its blatantly discriminatory handling of more than
2000 cases stemming from the Gujarat carnage has impelled the
Supreme Court of India to transfer some of the cases out of
He is a long-standing member of the RSS, an organization
modelled on the Nazis and the Italian fascists. Mr. Modi's
tenure has had a chilling effect on the Christian and Muslim
communities of Gujarat.
Mr. Modi's visit to the US is in violation of Section 604 of the
US International Religious Freedom Act which makes any foreign
official who has engaged in "particularly severe violations of
religious freedom" inadmissible to the United States.
We demand that:
The Indian government take immediate steps to punish the
perpetrators of the pogrom and to rehabilitate the victims.
AIANA and AAHOA rescind their invitation to Mr. Modi and appeal
to the co-sponsors of the AAHOA convention to withdraw their
The Indian and the US governments work together to curtail the
fund-raising and other activities in the US of hate groups such
as the one Mr.Modi belongs to.