Wharton Indian Students Association Doesn’t Understand Outrage Over Modi Speech

The chief minister of Gujarat and alleged human rights abuser Narendra Modi was dropped from the lineup at the 17th Wharton India Economic Forum thanks to internal pressure from professors and students at Wharton and from pressure outside. The petition signed by students and faculty was spearheaded by the Kractivist.

Geez Wharton. What were you thinking?

Narendra Modi at the 2008 World Economic Summit
Narendra Modi at the 2008 World Economic Summit

It appears that the conference was a student generated affair run by the Wharton Indian Students Association (WISA) who are given freedom to organize the conference and invite whomever they like. A Wharton professor I contacted soon after the initial scandal broke reacted with alarm and regretted not paying closer attention to the activities of the conference organizers. There was strong reaction within the Wharton community and this whole thing seems to have taken them all by surprise. This doesn’t alleviate entirely, the responsibility of Wharton itself, but the swiftness with which this exploded in the organizations face would suggest that it wasn’t something the school itself would have promoted on its own.

The students involved in WISA are both foreign students from India and diaspora students (often referred to as desi) born or living in the US. For some of the more zealous of these students, Modi is a kind of provincial hero, misunderstood, and champion of all things Hindu. They typically dismiss the outrage that unfolded over the last few days as part of some kind of general propaganda, promoted by numerous leftist factions both home and abroad. At it’s most innocent level it is just sheer ignorance, which is hardly to be excused for the high level of education that most of these students have received. But there is a darker side as well.

Students involved in the controversy are not at all remorseful and have given a rather confusing non-apology as a response:

Therefore, we as a team, would like to apologise for being a catalyst [that] may have put Mr.Modi and the Wharton School administration in a difficult position.

Followed with this zinger:

The Forum said it hoped to have Mr. Modi speak at a “more appropriate forum where he can interact with students without the distraction of this kind of attention.

This is not the appropriate response guys! Human rights are not an inconvenient “distraction” on the way to making your millions. Keep in mind that these are students that will leave their undergraduate degree and get jobs with 6 figures on Wall Street, or where ever.

Seems like the ethics and corruption profs at Wharton will have their work cut out for them. And when the students complain when they didn’t get an “A” in your class (Wharton students are the worst for this) you can say what every other right winger in America does when things don’t go their way: “Thanks Obama!”

This is precisely what this stellar piece of literature does, “Wharton Caves to Muslim Bigotry, Cancels Chief Minister Narendra Modi’s Keynote.”

It’s hard to watch. American stalwart institutions giving up our most basic freedom to Islamic supremacists, goons and thugs.

I just got the news that Gujrat’s Chief Minister, Sri Narendra Bhai Modi’s speech has been cancelled in the  USA, and some other Indian leader may speak in his place. This is likely due to the leftist Obama administration working in tandem with the pro-Islamic supremacist corrupt Congress government that is ruling India. Atlas reader Seema sent this to me. The loss of our most basic freedoms without firing a shot is stunning.

 Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi addressing the Dharmakul Vandana Mahotsav
Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi addressing the Dharmakul Vandana Mahotsav

This is the darker side and extension of the kind of student flippancy we read above in reaction to the outrage. It is part of a broader paranoia of a widespread, mythical Muslim-leftist agenda and is propagated primarily by right-wing Hindus. The references to “goons and thugs” as well as to “communists” (found in the link) is typical Hindutva-speak for “low-caste” activists and meant to try and diminish and undermine political reactions like this in a way that appeals to the conservative middle class in India.

The BJP itself, to their credit (I guess), are down playing this as insignificant whereas the headlines in India would make you think this is a major international incident. It could have been much worse than it was, but it has been loudly and quickly quashed.

My very favorite article coming out of yesterday’s aftermath was from this Onion-like article by Fakingnews.com: “Narendra Modi cancels dinner with himself to improve his image.” I love India so much for being able to laugh at itself.

On a self-agrandizing note our last effort was noticed by the Human Rights Watch Desk. although now you have to go to the third page or so to see it.

Images by AroundTheGlobe, World Economic Forum, and mailarvi.

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