Wednesday 26th February 2014 will go down in history as the day the mother of Parliament was high-jacked by extremists who abused the privilege and desecrated the sentiments of a peaceful and harmonious British Hindu community.
In a meeting room booked by Labour MP John McDonnell, organisations such as ‘The Monitoring Group’ and ‘Awaaz’ spewed vile unsubstantiated hate towards the Hindu community.
The British Hindu community is one of the most cohesive, contributory and peaceful
communities in Britain. It thrives on core Hindu values of love, peace and non- violence. Hindus have become a beacon community within the diversity of multi- ethnic and multi-faith communities that make up Britain.
Madhava Turumella, Vice President of the Hindu Forum of Britain who was in attendance and witnessed this fiasco first hand commented: “Hinduism is magnanimous in respecting the ideologies of others, it is clear that our tolerance has given these extremist the opportunity to attack and undermine our faith and our community”
Confirming the disappointment felt by the British Hindu community, Satish K Sharma the Secretary General of the National Council of Hindu Temples (NCHTUK), ‘It is most unfortunate that these Labour MPs opened the doors to Parliament, giving such extremists a platform to exhibit such hateful views. This is merely one more in a sequence of events, which indicate that the British Hindu Community is now the subject of a campaign of public vilification, as indicated by the the Lord Harries amendment and confirmed by subsequent media coverage in the mainstream British Press. Hindus, members of the oldest multi faith culture, subscribe to the ethos of Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’ meaning – the whole world is one family. It would appear that Parliamentary process has been perverted by persons who do not wish to see such confident interfaith principles being developed. We shall be consulting with our members and in due course will be requesting that Leaders of the Political Parties, clarify their position on this assault on the British Hindu Community.”
Prinal Nathwani Chairman of the City Hindu Network said "Once again, we come across a situation where the Hindu community in Britain is being unfairly and aggressively vilified. CHN is further shocked that such views are being supported,and indeed peddled, by supposed community leaders and organisations.
At a time when interfaith/intercommunity dialogue and co-operation is becoming increasingly important, it is alarming that there are still those within our community insistent on promoting division and fear, and seeking to take advantage of democratic principles and the Hindu ideals of tolerance, peaceful co-existence and a strong world community to promote these negative ideas".
Sri Rajnish Kashyap, Secretary General of The Hindu council UK said "I concur with all my Hindu colleagues in their outrage at the way and the manner in which our faith has been desecrated. This should be unacceptable to people of all faiths.”
Mukesh Naker Communications officer for British Hindu Voice said “Statements by Awaaz & TMG-UK by implication brands every Hindu as being a racist and a fascist. We strongly object to this form of vilification and undermine a peaceful and tolerant community.”
Britain is a wonderful country giving freedom of expression to everyone. With such freedoms come responsibility and good behaviour. We as a nation cannot and should not allow such extremist access to Parliament to peddle their lies and incite hatred. The leading Hindu organisations will continue to work collectively in fostering good relations with all communities. It is our hope that other communities will also distance themselves from such extremists.
Joint Statement Issued by:
Hindu Forum of Britain
National Council for Hindu Temples City Hindu Network
Hindu Council UK
National Hindu Students Forum British Hindu Voice