Hindu American Foundation Opposes Anti-Caste Discrimination Policy

By Abdulla Gaafarelkhalifa

On January 21, 2022, the Hindu American Foundation (HAF) posted an open letter in opposition to the California State University (CSU) system adding caste to their anti-discrimination policy and demanding its removal.

According to a press release relating to their response, over 80 CSU faculty members wrote a “blistering” letter to their Board of Trustees opposing the move.

They said since adding caste would apply only to faculty of Indian and South Asian descent, “the new policy would unfairly target a minority community for policing and disparate treatment.”

In the open letter itself, the HAF requested that “the new Collective Bargaining Agreement be approved only after removing caste as a protected category and that we meet in order for us to present evidence of the complete lack of due diligence exercised in the decision-making process.”

Following their questioning on the number of cases that resulted in this decision, as well as how many Indian/South Asian students and faculty they’ve consulted, they also attacked Equality Labs, the organization they deemed “anti-Hindu,” and “non-scientific” in their survey methodology. They also claim that the policy move is based on racist stereotypes.

They pointed out a different study, “Social Realities of Indian Americans: Results From the 2020 Indian American Attitudes Survey,” by Carnegie Endowment For International Peace (CEFIP), which, according to the HAF, negates the data that was collected of lower-caste individuals in the US by Equality Labs.

The CEFIP study states that only 5% of responders reported discrimination due to their caste. However, the questions about caste were only asked of Hindu responders even though casteism exists in all religions in the Indian subcontinent and diaspora, which means even though they collected data from 1,200 Indian Americans, only the 54% who identified as Hindu were asked about their experience with casteism thus making the data they are citing unreliable.

The Equality Labs report was based on a survey collected from 1,500 respondents and categorized them by caste rather than the responder’s religion. Had they asked the same question to the same people that Equality Labs requested when the data was collected, 5% from CEFIP would jump to 12% to 15% for people reporting discrimination in school due to their caste. For discrimination in the workplace, it would be closer to 20%.

The open letter ended with no signatures and no accurate number of how many people signed. It ends with “Sincerely, List of 80+ CSU Faculty suppressed.”

If you like our posts, subscribe to the Atheist Republic newsletter to get exclusive content delivered weekly to your inbox. Also, get the book "Why There is No God" for free.

Click Here to Subscribe

Donating = Loving

Heart Icon

Bringing you atheist articles and building active godless communities takes hundreds of hours and resources each month. If you find any joy or stimulation at Atheist Republic, please consider becoming a Supporting Member with a recurring monthly donation of your choosing, between a cup of tea and a good dinner.

Or make a one-time donation in any amount.