New Delhi: In yet another incident of discrimination, an Indian-origin astrophysicist, along with his friends, was not permitted to enter a Garba venue in Atlanta by the organisers. The organisers said that their surnames did not appear to be Hindu as a reason. Also Read - Grim Milestone: India Overtakes Russia as 3rd Worst COVID-hit Nation in World
Narrating his ordeal on micro-blogging site Twitter, Karan Jani, a 29-year-old renowned astrophysicist from Vadodara, wrote, “Year 2018 & Shakti Mandir in Atlanta, USA denied me and my friends’ entry from playing garba because: “You don’t look Hindu and the last name in your IDs don’t sound Hindu.” He even narrated his ordeal on other social media platforms. Also Read - India Only 399 Short of Russia to Become World's Third Worst-Hit Nation After Single-Day Spike of 24,850 Fresh Coronavirus Cases
Jani tried to convince the organisers in Gujarati but he was asked to leave the event. He had made it to the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) team in the US in 2016. He said that he never faced any such trouble over the years.
Jani further said that when one of his friends gave the volunteer’s ID proofs, they said that they would not be allowed as his surname ended with ‘wala’ and it didn’t seem to be a Hindu surname.
In the series of tweets, Jani claimed that one of the volunteers told his friend, “We don’t come to your events, you are not allowed to ours”.
“Our IDs had Indian Emblem. Yes, emblem with “Satyamev Jayate” right? Apparently, it didn’t have our religion. Our caste. It was embarrassing. I had tears in my eyes saying them. “I come here to play Garba for last 6 years. How could you not let us in because of the last name,” reads another tweet
Later, father of Karan Jani told to ANI, “Volunteers stopped him and told him he doesn’t look like a Hindu and even his surname doesn’t appear to be that of a Hindu. They check IDs. His ID has the national emblem on it, even then he was asked to leave. Later he talked to me over the phone and sounded nervous.”
According to the Times of India report, Jani also received a call from the temple organisation who said that they don’t believe in discrimination.
Last year, two Indians was killed in the USA. Engineer Srinivas Kuchibhotla (32) was killed in Kansas when 51-year-old US Navy veteran Adam Purinton opened fire at him and his friend Alok Madasani, yelling “get out of my country”. Another Harnish Patel, 43, the owner of a convenience store in Lancaster County, South Carolina, was found dead of gunshot wounds in the front yard of his home. Police had said in Patel’s killing his Indian ethnicity did not appear to be a factor.