The HAF’s board, staff, and executive council with the priests.
India Abroad June 21, 2013 A5 SPECIAL/THE HAF, 10
Dharma and Activism
PHOTOGRAPHS COUR TESY: TEJUS SHAH DESIGN & PHOTOGRAPH Y
The Hindu American Foundation celebrates its 10th anniversary with
lawmakers on Capitol Hill. Aziz Haniffa reports
The Hindu American Foundation, founded by second- generation professionals as an advocacy organization for Hindus in the United States and
elsewhere in the world, June 4 celebrated
10 years of activism on Capitol Hill.
Before the gala celebration — attended by
over 300 people in the ornate House Canon
Caucus Room in Capitol Hill — a Hindu
monk offered the opening prayer for the US
House of Representatives.
The birth sesquicentennial of Swami
Vivekananda, considered Hinduism’s first
ambassador to the West, was marked in the
The Congressional reception, where
Senate and House leaders lauded the
HAF’s accomplishments over the years, followed.
‘The dividends of a decade of investments
in education, advocacy, and tireless interactions with every level of our nation’s government were on display throughout HAF’s
full day of events,’ said Dr Mihir Meghani,
The HAF’s Aseem Shukla, right, greets US Representative Eliot Engel.
physician, co-founder and member of the
HAF’s board of directors. ‘A Hindu prayer
given on the floor of the House, and the
words of Swami Vivekananda offered by
Congressman Ami Bera inspired a remark-
able day and will carry us into the next
decade of tireless work.’
Early June 4, over 50 delegates represent-
ing HAF fanned out in teams, visiting
dozens of Congressional offices.
Delegates asked the lawmakers to begin a
Congressional letter to Secretary of State
John Kerry, calling on the incoming Nawaz
Sharif government to take concrete steps to
ease the continuing religious persecution of
and violence faced by Hindus, Shia and
Ahmadiyya Muslims, and Christians in
HAF delegates called for the House
Foreign Affairs Committee and Senate
Foreign Relations Committee to host
Congressional hearings on the retaliatory
violence faced by Hindus and Buddhists in