A couple of weeks back, I received a flyer on WhatsApp. It was colorful and text-heavy from an organization called Global Hindu Heritage Foundation (GHHF). I’ll admit I had not heard of this organization up until this point. The flyer was an invitation to a gala dinner in Frisco, Texas. The content seemed innocuous enough until you came to the section that was highlighted for me: “With your help, support & donations, we recommit to protect our Bharat Mata.” And among the agendas mentioned was “Demolition of Illegal Churches in Tirupati, India.”
I admit, I went into some sort of internal paralysis as images of another demolition from 30 years ago ran past my mind — the Babri Masjid demolition by Hindu fanatics in 1992. As well as the repercussions that followed — riots, killings, maiming, as well as the electoral gains that the right-wing political arm of the Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP) and Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) — the Bhartiya Janata Party gained is still being felt. This incident happened 30 years ago on December 6th and the images of the mob sitting atop the demolished masjid still drive chills down my spine. At that time, we were glued to our TVs at home in disbelief — mute witnesses to the carnage that would soon follow.
Following the WhatsApp message, another tweet was forwarded to me a few minutes later — this one, a letter to its group members where it was more detailed — “…where we are going to present our activities in Bharat to ensure the survival of Sanatan Dharma and also encounter aggressive Christian rampant conversion tactics through Ghar Waapasi, Bala Samskar (Sunday schools), renovation of grama devatas, demolition of illegal churches and other activities.” The letter then goes on to describe in detail about the demolition effort — “every one of nearly 75 churches built without the required permission from the district collector.”
And written in all bold were these lines: It is the dharma of every Hindu to preserve, protect and cherish the ideals of Bharat Mata. let us not be a spectator for the destruction, suffocation, stabbing of motherland. Doing our dharma is the need of the hour. Serving the motherland should be the highest privilege.”
This story was originally published in americankahani.com . Read the full story here