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The Sikh Coalition News
March 4, 2021
  • Sikh Coalition Continues Engaging U.S. State Department on Farmers’ Protest

    March 4, 2021 (Washington, DC) -- As protesting farmers in India prepare to enter their sixth month of demonstrations, the Sikh Coalition continues to engage the Biden Administration in efforts to solicit a more forceful response in support of the farmers’ protest.

    Today, the Sikh Coalition sent a letter to the U.S. Department of State. This letter is a formal response to the department’s reply to our January 21 and 27 letters, which urged President Biden’s administration to strongly denounce India's anti-democratic response to the peaceful farmers' protest. In this reply to the State Department, we outline some of the most recent reported human rights abuses occurring in India and offer to facilitate a briefing with experts on associated issues for State Department staff.

    Click here to read our latest letter to the Biden Administration around the #FarmersProtest.

    “We continue to call on President Biden, Secretary of State Blinken, and others within the Biden Administration to more forcefully support the rights of farmers to peacefully protest and dissent and condemn India’s anti-democratic actions in response,” said Senior Manager of Policy and Advocacy, Sim J. Singh. “In this moment, the United States has the opportunity to put its values into action and reposition itself as a moral leader and a champion of democracy and human rights.”

    Take Action: Use our free advocacy tool to join thousands of community members in asking your elected officials to speak out on this critical issue today! Together, we have sent almost 20,000 emails to members of the U.S. Congress. Every additional statement of support further sends the message that the world is watching India. If you have already contacted your member of Congress, please do so again! There is no limit to how many times you can take action to contact them on this issue.

    In the meantime, the Sikh Coalition will continue to demand attention to this issue by engaging other parties, including congressional offices, international human rights organizations, and tech companies (who are increasingly complicit in India’s anti-democratic behavior). Along with our continued State Department and congressional outreach, this work builds on our previous efforts to equip sangats to lobby on this issue (including via local resolutions) and rally press freedom organizations to support detained and harassed Indian journalists.

    In addition, the Sikh Coalition continues to push for responsible and respectful media coverage of the farmers’ protest by providing interviewees and background information to journalists in India and the United States. So far, this work has resulted in media coverage in multiple news outlets including NowThis, NBC, CNN, JUS Punjabi, The Guardian, Reuters, the Seattle Times, and more.

    Whether you have contacted your elected officials, shared stories from the ground on social media, attended a solidarity rally or caravan, or taken other actions, thank you for your continued involvement in this shared effort. We look forward to providing further updates in the days and weeks ahead.

    As always, the Sikh Coalition urges you to practice your faith fearlessly.
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