By Janice C.
(CHAKRA) In 2013, the prestigious school of Wharton at the University of Pennsylvania had its annual Wharton India Economic Forum (WIEF). The event organizers invited Narendra Modi to be their keynote speaker via live telecast, but due to later cancelled his invitation due to pressure from non-Wharton staff with opinionated and furious bias of Modi’s involvement in the 2002 Gujarat riots where hundreds of Hindus and Muslims both died.
More details on the ‘furious’ anti-Modi petition that prevented Modi from speaking at the event can be readhere. Ironically, a few days after Wharton’s WIEF event, Modi was visited by a USA delegation in Gujarat. The delegation consisted of 3 USA Congress Representative (Cathy Rodgers, Representative Aaron Schock and Representative Cynthia Lummis) with prominent business persons also present.
The below video describes who opposed Modi’s invite and caused pressure on Wharton’s WIEF organizers via their ‘furious’ petition. Some of the names indicated in the video are Ania Loomba, Toorjo Ghosh, Anjali Arondekar, who all have some type of connections to Angana Chatterji, a key player in the opposition of Modi’s 2005 USA visit, based on the video below. The video also highlights how some of the anti-Modi petitioners have been associated with other common campaigns in the past.
It seems even in modern America it is possible for some academics that are accused by many to be biased against a religion and community can help stop a respected 3-time democratically elected official from speaking at an economic conference, even though hundreds of professionals and students protested the decision to ban Modi from speaking at the event. More details about the pro free-speech, pro freedom of thought, pro democracy and pro-Modi protests can be read here.
Please take 10 minutes to watch the below video describing some not-so-public details around the whole anti-Narendra Modi petition that influenced the Wharton WIEF from hosting the Gujarat Chief Minister and potential next PM of India.