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Bid to silence HAF

Bid to silence HAF
June 03
13:22 2021

Harish Rao

CHICAGO: The Hindu American Foundation (HAF) announced that it received a communication from the Pakistan‚Äôs Telecommunication Authority (PTA) Web Analysis Division about the recently launched HAF Bengali Hindu Genocide ‚ÄėRemembering the Lost, Celebrating Survival‚Äô commemoration website.

The PTA communication demands that HAF take down the Bengali Hindu Genocide web page, which captures a variety of perspectives on the genocidal actions of then West Pakistan‚Äôs (now modern Pakistan‚Äôs) military, ‚Äúwithin (24) hours.‚ÄĚ

The letter also states that the government of Pakistan will ‚Äúremove or block‚ÄĚ access to HAF‚Äôs Bengali Hindu Genocide web page in Pakistan.  This nearly 10 month genocidal campaign left 2-3 million dead, 200,000-400,000 women raped, and more than 10 million people displaced‚ÄĒ a majority of which were Hindu.

 ‚ÄúYour Website i.e. https://www.hinduamerican.org/1971-bangladesh-genocide is involved in dissemination of content with intent to ridicule, defame the Armed Forces of Pakistan in order to provoke anti-state sentiments, cause disharmony, feelings of enmity among masses at large which is prejudicial to the integrity, sovereignty and security of Pakistan,‚ÄĚ the communication states.

 ‚ÄúThe government of Pakistan‚Äôs feeble attempt to threaten and intimidate a respected American non-profit organization is just the latest example of anti-American, anti-Hindu acts,‚ÄĚ stated Deepali Kulkarni, HAF Director of Human Rights. ‚ÄúThe Islamic Republic of Pakistan has a proven track record of killing, forcefully converting, or driving out Hindus, Christians, Ahmaddiya Muslim, and other religious minorities in Pakistan, and now it appears that they are going after these same religious minorities in other countries, too,‚ÄĚ Kulkarni added.

 ‚ÄúWithout Prejudice to the aforementioned submissions, in case of failure to comply with the aforementioned direction within a stipulated timeline, PTA shall be constrained to initiate action in accordance with applicable laws,‚ÄĚ the government of Pakistan further wrote to HAF. It also threatened to impose a ‚Äúpenalty up to [Pakistani] rupees five hundred million‚ÄĚ or $3.27 million USD.

 ‚ÄúThis is Washington, not Islamabad,‚ÄĚ stated Taniel Koushkjian, HAF Director of Public Policy. ‚ÄúWhether you are an American foreign agent working with another government trying to defame us, or a foreign terrorist regime threatening us, it doesn‚Äôt matter. HAF will not be silenced,‚ÄĚ he said. Since the publication of the statement, HAF has learned that the whole of www.hinduamerican.org has been blocked for viewers in Pakistan.

“Nothing is more clear or more easily documented, than the systematic campaign of terror – and its genocidal consequences launched by the Pakistan army on the night of March 25th‚Ķ Hardest hit have been members of the Hindu community who have been robbed of their lands and shops systematically slaughtered, and, in some places, painted with yellow patches marked ‘H’.” ‚ÄĒ Sen. Edward M Kennedy, November 1971

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