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Sunday, August 14, 2022

Tracking Hinduphobia in digital and real world

It is no new information that the internet is witnessing a rise in anti-Hindu activity. With the recent rise in international and intra-country propaganda, there has been a sharp rise in hate speech towards Hindus. 

Researchers of Rutgers University recently released a full report on “Anti-Hindu Disinformation: A Case Study of Hinduphobia on Social Media” under the Network Contagion Research Institute. Researchers Prasiddha Sudhakar, John Farmer, Dr. Parth Parihar, Dr. Joel Finkelstein, Dr. Lee Jussim, and Denver Riggleman have together authored this report. 

The report outlines that the hate and bigotry being faced by the Hindu community is nothing less than anti-Semitism. It states that: “Today’s Hinduphobia exploits tropes that are centuries old to re-ignite hatred. What is new, however, and cause for alarm and the issuance of this report, is the deployment of those tropes over social media in what amounts to a new playbook for rekindling an old hatred.”

Hinduphobia has been described in the research as “the portrayal of Hindus as fundamentally heretical, evil, dirty, tyrannical, genocidal, irredeemable or disloyal”. 

Hinduphobia as a concept is often dismissed by people, who feel that a ‘majority’ society can never face discrimination. But it needs to be understood that in the global picture Hindus are not in majority, and it is the ‘minority’ in Bharat who, in fact, are the global majority with a proselytizing agenda and rising population. 

Hinduphboic memes found on social media in Rutgers study

This study has found that “Hinduphobia is now exploding across entire Web communities across millions of comments, interactions and impressions in both mainstream and extremist platforms.”

The Global Anti-Hindu Scorecard

Did you know that there exists a website that live tracks all anti-Hindu activity on the internet daily?  www.hindumisia.ai is a website that tracks anti-Hindu trends in real-time. The developer of the website is Ramsundar Lakshminarayana based in Chicago.

Photo: Twitter

According to Swarajya‘s profile of Ramsundar Lakshminarayan:  

“He is an IT executive with experience in data analytics. He has Big4 and financial services background. He is a national convenor for Indic Academy in the US. He is the creator of hindumisia.ai. He tweets as @cm_ram23, curates @hindumisia on Twitter, and @hindumisia.ai on Instagram.”

Hindumisia means ‘Hindu Hate’. This platform has a social media presence of more than 3000 followers on Twitter. With the vision of “‘Measure, Monitor, and Expose”, this platform aims to highlight the growing trend of hate speech towards Hindus and Hindu Dharma. 

Photo: Swarajya

Using a color scheme of blue (moderate), yellow (severe), and red (toxic), this Artificial Intelligence website is capable of telling the number of anti-Hindu handles as well as tweets on any given day. It also notifies the “Global Anti-Hindu Intensity” which is ‘toxic’ as of 15 July 2022. 

The website creatively uses statistical representations of graphs and pie-charts to highlight the increase or decrease in the number of anti-Hindu tweets and trends. Its AI model also has a feature of analyzing tweets submitted by the general public on whether they are Hindumisic or not. According to the website-

“Anti-Hindu hate is detected by applying a hate detection model developed using Artificial Intelligence and related techniques. This detection is not generic in nature, but one that is built specifically to detect anti-Hindu hate.”

The website stores all the tweets the self-collected and submitted ones –  for further research, analysis, and action. All these tweets can unfortunately not be accessed by the general public. However, Hindumisia.ai does plan to provide private access to select Dharmic advocacy organizations and the Dharmic academic communities in support of grassroots advocacy and research.

Hindu Human Rights Watch by HinduPost

HinduPost is attempting to remedy the situation by building a database of human rights violations of Hindus across the world. This database tracks crimes and human rights violations driven by anti-Hindu sentiment and/or perpetrated by non-Hindus.

Hindupost invites submissions by the general public which can be in the form of any news regarding any such violation. This is a huge community-driven project and we are hoping that this database will bring a change in the mindset of people who have become ignorant of the discrimination and hate Hindus are facing across the world. 

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