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Harvard Boots Swamy For ‘Hate Speech’

Harvard University’s Faculty of Arts & Science has voted to drop courses taught by controversial Indian politician Subramanian Swamy because of his controversial column in an Indian newspaper attacking Muslims.

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Harvard Boots Swamy For ‘Hate Speech’

Harvard University’s Faculty of Arts & Science has voted to drop courses taught by controversial Indian politician Subramanian Swamy because of his controversial column in an Indian newspaper attacking Muslims.

A week after the Mumbai blasts on July 13, in a column titled “How to Wipe out Islamic Terror” in Daily News & Analysis, Swamy called for stripping voting rights from Muslims who “refuse to acknowledge” their Hindu ancestry, destroying nearly 300 mosques he claims were built on “temple sites” and renaming “India Hindustan as a nation of Hindus.”

Comparative Religion Professor Diana L. Eck, who led the criticism, denounced the “unwelcome political views,” saying “Swamy’s op-ed clearly crosses the line by demonizing an entire religious community and calling for violence against their sacred places.”

At the time the article was published in August, Harvard University had defended Swamy’s right to express his unpopular political views, but in December the Faculty of Arts & Science voted overwhelmingly to effectively oust him by removing his two summer economics courses.

History Professor Sugata Bose said that Swamy’s position advocating the denial of voting rights to Muslims “is like saying Jewish Americans and African Americans should not be all- owed to vote unless they acknowledge the supremacy of white Anglo Saxon Protestants.”

Philosophy Department Chair Sean D Kelly told the Harvard Crimson that he was persuaded “that the views expressed in Dr. Swamy’s op-ed piece amounted to incitement of violence instead of protected political speech.”

Swamy, whose Twitter account carries the tagline “I give as good as I get,” responded to a Twitter fan who inquired if he would sue Harvard: “If it was in India I would. But in a foreign country? Why waste time?” He added, “IIT/D sacked me in 1973. Four years later, I became a member of the IIT Board Governors — the very body which had sacked me!”

Subramanian Swamy’s column is no longer available on Daily News & Analysis, although it has been widely reprinted on the web. At the end of the column, Swamy outlines five strategic responses to Islamic terrorism, four of which have raised hackles:

• Remove Article 370 and resettle ex-servicemen in the valley. Create Panun Kashmir for the Hindu Pandit community. Look for or create an opportunity to take over PoK. If Pakistan continues to back terrorists, assist the Baluchis and Sindhis to get their independence.

• Remove the masjid in Kashi Vishwanath temple and the 300 masjids at other temple sites.

• Implement the uniform civil code, make learning of Sanskrit and singing of Vande Mataram mandatory, and declare India a Hindu Rashtra in which non-Hindus can vote only if they proudly acknowledge that their ancestors were Hindus. Rename India Hindustan as a nation of Hindus and those whose ancestors were Hindus.

• Enact a national law prohibiting conversion from Hinduism to any other religion. Re-conversion will not be banned. Declare that caste is not based on birth but on code or discipline. Welcome non-Hindus to re-convert to the caste of their choice provided they adhere to the code of discipline. Annex land from Bangladesh in proportion to the illegal migrants from that country staying in India. At present, the northern third from Sylhet to Khulna can be annexed to re-settle illegal migrants.

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Odds & Ends | January 2012 | Education

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