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After humiliating Hindu students, Rutgers issues a follow up ‘apology’, but stays silent on alleged ‘historian’ Audrey Truschke: What we know so far

According to Dr Indu Viswanathan, who is coordinating with the Hindu students on the issue, more issues have been discussed and agreed upon than what appears in the statement released by the university.

Days after Rutgers-Newark University stoked a massive controversy by supporting controversial ‘historian’ and Professor Audrey Truschke by whitewashing her anti-Hindu remarks and views as ‘academic freedom’, the university has now backtracked a bit and issued an apology to the Hindu community for failing to communicate properly causing misunderstanding. However, they have remained silent in their latest statement about the conduct of Audrey Truschke.

In a statement released on Friday, the Rutgers-Newark University said they support the Hindu community members and expressed ‘sincerest apologies’ for their failure to communicate clearly in their previous message.

“At our meeting today with members of the Rutgers Hindu community, this misunderstanding was made clear and again we apologize. We are sorry for the hurt that members of the Hindu community have been experiencing in relation to recent events. Our commitment to inclusion includes religion, not just the right but the freedom to celebrate as an individual or community without fear,” said Rutgers University.

The Rutgers University, which has backed Audrey Truschke’s vile bigotry against Hindus and their culture, said that they know that the sacred traditions of Hinduism are central to the identities that define Hindu individuals, families, and communities.

“We abhor the vile messages and threats that are being directed at Hindu students and call for an immediate end to them,” said Rutgers university after meeting Hindu students who met the administration to apprise them of the hateful propaganda peddled by Audrey Truschke in the name of the ‘history’.

The statement said, “We are grateful to the student leaders across Rutgers University who raised their voices and personalized the sentiments of our Hindu community. We will be working in partnership with them to foster an environment that educates and embraces the range of cultural and religious identities, scholarly traditions, and perspectives of this community. This will be difficult work, but we will do this together because it is essential to live into our values and realize the promise of constructive and healthy engagement in a diverse community.”

Importantly, in its response, Rutgers University has neither mentioned Audrey Truschke nor her bigotry against Hindus and their culture. Instead, the university has just apologised to the Hindu community for not communicating properly following the controversy. The university, in fact, has not taken any action against the alleged ‘historian’ Truschke for her false propaganda against Hindus, instead, it has issued a statement, which incidentally appears to be another hogwash.

It is pertinent to note that Rutgers had claimed that they emphatically support Professor Truschke and her academic freedom in pursuing her scholarship. The university had said they abhor the alleged vile messages and threats that are being directed at her.

More issues were discussed, this is just a start: Hindu activists

Meanwhile, the group of Hindu students studying at Rutgers-Newark who were the first to shed light on Truschke’s bigotry, have met the university administration to discuss the Hinduphobia in the university campus, especially peddled by the likes of Truschke.

According to Dr Indu Viswanathan, who is coordinating with the Hindu students on the issue, more issues have been discussed and agreed upon than what appears in the statement released by the university.

Taking to Twitter, she said that this is a process, and there is a strategy to address the issue, and it was a huge step towards institutional recognition of Hinduphobia, which has never happened in history.

Hindu students expose Audrey Truschke’s Hinduphobia , Rutgers hails it as ‘academic freedom’

The controversy broke out after several Hindu students of Rutgers University had written a letter to the university in reaction to ‘historian’ Audrey Truschke’s attempts to sell Hinduphobic fiction in the name of ‘history.

In its petition, the group of Hindu students studying at Rutgers-Newark pointed out that Audrey Truschke tired to trivialise and downplay the Hindu genocide committed by the Mughal tyrant Aurangzeb. The students who initiated the petition were miffed with Truschke’s continuous vile and bigoted opinions against Hindus.

In an open letter written to the university authorities, the students said that they are “aghast at the bigotry being peddled against Hindus via continued derision of our religion, our deities, and our sacred texts” in the university, which may be a potential threat to their security, as it may lead to “potential attacks, bullying, and backlash, either on campus or via social media, due to our faith”.

The petition specified how the atmosphere in the university is at odds with the Hindu student due to the hateful and vile anti-Hindu remarks made by professor Audrey Truschke on various occasions.

Castigating the administration of Rutgers University for its bias towards a professor who has always painted Hinduism through the lens of violence, extremism and sex, the students demanded that “Prof Truschke be disallowed to teach a course that involves materials related to Hinduism and India due to her inherent prejudiced views”.

However, Rutgers University, instead of addressing the concerns of Hindu students, had backed Audrey Truschke and whitewashed her vile and bigoted anti-Hindu remarks as ‘academic freedom’.

Statement released by Rutgers-Newark

In a statement released on Tuesday, the university said, “Rutgers emphatically supports Professor Truschke, academic freedom in pursuing her scholarship, abhors the vile messages end threats that are being directed at her, and calls for an immediate end to them.” To further justify its support for the controversial historian, Rutgers cited the significance of ‘academic freedom’ in scholarship.

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Staff reporter at OpIndia

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