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By Adam Rizvi, TRENTON, NJ. TIO:WASHINGTON, DC (Nov. 14, 2021) – Hundreds of people of various faiths, professions, and backgrounds gathered in eight major U.S. cities on Saturday and Sunday to protest Facebook’s decision to allow hate speech to be freely posted in India, resulting in persecution, physical attacks, and killings of non-Hindu minority religions members.
Speakers at the protests, arranged by India Genocide Watch, demanded that Facebook’s founder-CEO Mark Zuckerberg discontinue his company’s role in extreme Hindu right-wing incitement to violence, as documented by whistleblower Frances Haugen on Facebook and WhatsApp.
Women and children participated in protests in Atlanta, Chicago, Charlotte, Houston, Los Angeles, San Diego, Seattle, and Menlo Park, San Francisco, where Facebook is located.
Many of the demonstrators, who will never be able to return to India, have family members who are subjected to state-sanctioned persecution, discrimination, and physical abuse in India.
Also, Read: Will India be another Germany under Hitler?
SPEAKERS CONDEMN FACEBOOK INACTION ON HATE SPEECH
“We demand that Facebook designate as dangerous organizations Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party, its Nazi-inspired ideological parent Rashtriya Swayamasevak Sangh and their armed affiliates, Vishwa Hindu Parishad and Bajrang Dal,” declared Rasheed Ahmed, Executive Director of the Indian American Muslim Council.
At a protest at Menlo Park in California, outside the global headquarters of Meta, the new name for Facebook, Inc., Javid Ali of Bay Muslims for Human Rights, said, “Facebook deliberately and knowingly refused to block Islamophobic hate enabling fascist violence against India’s Muslims. Facebook has blood on its hands.” Added Karthic of Ambedkar King Study Circle, “The algorithms used in Facebook are biased against the religious minorities and the socially oppressed. We condemn Facebook for failing to fix these proven issues.”
As protesters braved the rain to march to Facebook’s office in Seattle chanting “Facebook Hatebook,” Kshama Sawant, a member of the Seattle City Council, said, “Companies such as Facebook, Google, Microsoft, and Amazon are participants… in the state forces of bigotry, hate, religions and caste oppressions.” Added Hira Singh Bhullar of Khalsa Gurmat Center, a Sikh NGO: “This hate is coming from politicians promoting hate. Shame on Facebook.” Said Javed Sikander, a Muslim activist: “The hatred is destroying the fabric of Indian society.”
At Charlotte, North Carolina, protester Elyas Mohammed said, “Facebook provided a platform for the right-wing hate-mongering elements to flourish. Had it taken stringent action on fake accounts things could have been different.”
Shakeib Mashhood, a protester at Houston, Texas, said: “Facebook is becoming a tool to spread hate In India, which is very outrageous. More concerning is that Facebook knew that this was happening but it did not take any action. They did not block it.”
At Chicago, Syed Shoaib Qadri said, “We want accountability from Facebook for its criminal behavior.”
Added Musaddique Thange, a protester at San Diego, California, “Facebook is enabling inflammatory and violent rhetoric against Muslims in India and around the world. Facebook should designate RSS, Bajrang Dal and all its affiliates as dangerous and terrorist organizations.”
Zameer Khan, the organizer of the Atlanta protest, declared: “Public protests and demonstrations are needed to begin to galvanize the American people and politicians especially into taking action against Facebook for poor management of its social media platform.”
PROTESTERS’ SLOGANS SEND POWERFUL MESSAGES TO POWER
Some of the posters and placards held up by marchers said:
- FACEBOOK ENABLES RACISM
- FACEBOOK ENABLES FASCISM
- FACEBOOK UNDERMINES DEMOCRACIES
- FACEBOOK PROMOTES ISLAMOPHOBIA
- FACEBOOK HATE SPEECH RULES HELP BJP IN INDIA
- FACEBOOK FAILED ITS USERS
INDIAN POLITICAL PARTIES USING FACEBOOK TO SPREAD HATE SPEECH
The huge RSS-BJP network is running phony pages and purposefully spreading misinformation, hate speech, and incitement to violence, as revealed by Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen and Facebook’s own internal documentation.
With at least 340 million Facebook accounts and 400 million WhatsApp users, India is Facebook’s largest market. The social media behemoth has been increasingly focused on its financial interests in India, failing to address the tsunami of hate and violence that its services have enabled.
INDIA OF CONCERN ON GENOCIDE WATCH
Genocide Watch has issued the Genocide Emergency: India document, which places India at stage No. 8 on the 10-point scale leading to genocide, adding that while the government is not yet at the mass extermination phase, No. 9, it is already at No. 10, official denial, due to its ongoing state-sponsored persecution of religious minorities.
“We think that now in Kashmir and Assam, the stage is at persecution, and that’s the stage just before actual genocide,” said Dr. Gregory H. Stanton, Founding President and Chairman of Genocide Watch.
On Oct. 4, 2021, Time Magazine
, published an important article detailing how India is headed on the path of a full-blown anti-Muslim genocide.
FACEBOOK ACCUSED OF STALLING INDIA REPORT
Human rights advocates have accused Facebook of delaying its report on efforts it is doing to identify and eliminate hate speech, according to a Wall Street Journal piece published over the weekend. The Washington Post, New York Times, and Associated Press have published extensive coverage of whistleblower Haugen’s submissions to the US Securities and Exchange Commission, as well as other documents, to show how Facebook knowingly allowed anti-Muslim hate speech and incitement to violence to spread in India.
Source: India Genocide Watch
Curated by: Leen Hamade. For any corrections please email at Mediaiss@gmail.com