Press Conference: Victims, Experts to Highlight Prime Minister Modi’s Authoritarianism and Human Rights Violations

The Coalition for Reclaiming Indian Democracy, a coalition of civil rights and interfaith organizations representing Indian-American Hindus, Muslims, Christians, Dalits and allies, will host a press conference titled “Beyond the Hype: Highlighting Prime Minister Modi’s Authoritarianism and Human Rights Violations” to express strong opposition to the decision made by President Biden and Congressional leaders to platform Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi for a state dinner and addressing a joint session of Congress.

The event will feature victims, experts, and members of civil society who will highlight concerns over Modi’s troubling track record on human rights, religious freedom, democratic backsliding, and his crackdown on civil society, critics, and the press.

WHAT: Press conference

WHEN: Wednesday, June 21, 2023, at 10 AM

WHERE: THE NATIONAL PRESS CLUB, 529 14th St. NW, 13th Floor Washington, DC 20045

WHO: Coalition for Reclaiming Indian Democracy (


Nadine Maenza

Nadine Maenza is a Global Fellow at the Wilson Center. She is the President of the International Religious Freedom (IRF) Secretariat and former chair of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF).

Dr. Gregory H. Stanton

Dr. Stanton is the founding president and chairman of Genocide Watch.  From 2010 to 2019, he was a research professor in genocide studies and prevention at the School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution at George Mason University, Arlington, Virginia, USA. From 2003 to 2009, he was the James Farmer Professor in Human Rights at the University of Mary Washington in Fredericksburg, Virginia.

Arjun Sethi

Arjun Singh Sethi is a community activist, civil rights lawyer, and author based in Washington, D.C. He is an adjunct professor of law at Georgetown University Law Center and Vanderbilt University Law School.

Dr. Angana Chatterji 

Dr. Angana Chatterji is Co-chair, Political Conflict, Gender and People’s Rights Initiative at the Center for Race and Gender at University of California, Berkeley. Her publications include: Majoritarian State: How Hindu Nationalism is Changing India and Violent Gods: Hindu Nationalism in India’s Present.

Dr. Aakashi Bhatt

Dr. Aakashi Bhatt is the daughter of Sanjiv Bhatt, incarcerated whistleblower police officer who testified before India’s Supreme Court that Modi ordered the police to allow Hindus to kill Muslims.

Malini Ranganathan

Malini Ranganathan is an Associate Professor at the School of International Service at American University in Washington, D.C. Her scholarship and teaching focus on urban and regional politics in India, particularly caste, class, and religious inequalities related to housing, land, and the environment.

Raqib Hameed Naik

Raqib Hameed Naik is a renowned journalist of Kashmiri origin and an expert on Hindu nationalism. He is also the founder of a research project that documents the rise of Hindu nationalism in India and tracks hate crimes and hate speeches against religious minorities on daily basis.

Lien Gangte

Lien Gangte is the senior Leader of the North American Manipur Tribal Association (NAMTA).

Niranjan Takle

Niranjan Takle is a senior Indian journalist with decades of experience covering some of the important stories concerning politics, Hindu nationalism, and minorities. He is the author of “Who Killed Judge Loya.”

Zaki Barzinji

Zaki Barzinji is Senior Director of Empowered Communities at Aspen Digital, a program of the Aspen Institute, where he leads their work at the intersection of tech and marginalized communities. He is the co-founder and board member of Americans for Kashmir, a DC-based policy organization led by Kashmiri-Americans and has served in the Obama administration as the White House liaison to Muslim Americans, Sikhs, and other minority faith communities.