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HomeNewsUnited States' Hindu lawmakers complain to DOJ about hate crimes targeting community

United States’ Hindu lawmakers complain to DOJ about hate crimes targeting community

The letter addressed to United States' Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke highlights the 'alarming increase' in attacks on Hindu temples across the country

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Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi, along with other members of the Samosa Caucus, penned a letter to the Department of Justice of the United States, inquiring about its approach towards hate crimes targeting Hindus. The letter, dated 29 March, requested a briefing to be conducted by Thursday, 18 April.

The signatories of this correspondence consist of various Congress members such as Ro Khanna, Parmila Jayapal, Ami Bera, MD, and Shri Thanedar.

The letter addressed to United States’ Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke highlights the “alarming increase in incidents of hooliganism at houses of worship across the country, including at Hindu mandirs (“temples”).”

The letter reads: “We, the undersigned Members of Congress of South Asian descent, write to request a briefing from the Department of Justice on the status of investigations concerning these crimes to better understand existing law enforcement coordination between local agencies, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and the Civil Rights Division.”

The letter continues: “… attacks at mandirs from New York to California have contributed to increased collective anxiety among Hindu Americans.” Leaders of the affected communities say there are unfortunately “no leads” on suspects, “leaving many to continue to live in fear and intimidation”.

“Our communities remain concerned about law enforcement coordination regarding these bias-motivated crimes, and they are left wondering if there is appropriate federal oversight to ensure equal protection under the law,” the letter says.

The letter says further, “The number of incidents and the closeness of the timing of incidents raise troubling questions about linkages and the intent behind them. It takes relatively few coordinated acts of hate to create fear nationally within a community that has often been marginalized or neglected, and we must work collaboratively to combat hate against all religious, ethnic, racial, and cultural minorities in America.”

“We therefore request that you provide us with an understanding of what the Department’s strategy is specifically concerning hate crimes targeting Hindus in the United States. Given the urgency of the situation, we ask that you provide us with a briefing no later than Thursday, April 18th,” the letter concludes.

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