The following statement was issued by Ajay Shah, Convener, HinduPACT USA:
HinduPACT has stood for the democratic right to peaceful protest. However, the events this week at the Capitol Hill are not reflective of peaceful protests.
We believe that such riots undermine the democracy and democratic processes and must be denounced by all. We also believe that there is no place for flags of any country other than the USA at these protests.
We note that attempts to link the Bharatiya flag to Hindus by Hinduphobes has failed after the identity of the person carrying the flag was revealed.
Commenting on the Capitol Hill riots, Ajay Shah, the President of VHPA and Convenor of HinduPACT stated:
“American Hindus are categorically against any rioting. We believe that riots and anarchy have no place in a democracy. We believe that the right to peaceful protest is sacrosanct and an orderly transfer of power is essential for the survival of democracy.
HinduPACT was against the Antifa takeover of public spaces during the past summer, and we are against the breach of Capitol Hill by the rioters in Washington DC this week.
We note with dismay that an Indian flag was seen at the demonstration. We believe that the Indian flag, or a flag of any country, had any place at the demonstrations when issues at stake are internal to that country. This is again, consistent with the stand we had taken when foreign flags were seen during protests and riots in summer.“
Utsav Chakrabarti, Executive Director of the HinduPACT commented:
“It is truly unfortunate to see the events that unfolded at the Capitol Hill yesterday. These events highlight the point that street justice has no place in the democratic process.
Unfortunately, this form of grievance redressal was glorified and used a successful tactic for mobilization during the run up to the election by one side.
A tactic that successfully worked for one side, is bound to be picked up and applied by the other side, in a situation where both sides have little desire or space to reconcile.”
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