Indo-American Convention Draws Concerns about Alleged Ties to Extremists

June 27, 2003

Source: Mercury News

On June 27, 2003 the Mercury News reported that "Silicon Valley's Indo-American community has an influence over homeland politics perhaps unprecedented for an immigrant group... So it is not surprising that a convention of expatriates to be held Saturday at the Santa Clara Marriott attempts to pull together an array of groups varied in religion, but with the same political aim of bringing India, the world's largest democracy, closer to the secular ideal that defined the nation's inception. The event is coordinated by the Indian Muslim Council... Secular activists contend that Silicon Valley's Indo-Americans contribute financially and ideologically to the same Hindu nationalist organizations that allowed Hindu mobs to kill more than 1,000 Muslims and rape hundreds of Muslim women in Gujarat, India in the spring of 2002. Those riots were ignited when a Muslim mob stoned and set fire to a train carrying Hindu activists, killing 59... The report about the India Development and Relief Fund prompted Silicon Valley companies -- including Cisco and Oracle -- to suspend corporate matching of employee donations because of the charities' alleged ties to Hindu extremist activities."