|Protest the Visit of Modi, the Chief Architect of Gujarat Pogroms|
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 Gujarat.
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 support.
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.