Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh

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Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh (HSS, and commonly known as Sangh) says it a voluntary, non-profit, social and cultural organisation operating in several countries, including the UK and USA.

Australia[edit]

The HSS organisation in Australia, as elsewhere, says that its focus is on the country in which it is based and that it does not send money to India. It claims to be "ideologically inspired by the RSS vision of a progressive and dynamic Hindu society that can deal with its internal and external challenges, and contribute to the welfare of the whole world". Aside from providing links to the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), they also have links with organisations such as the Vishwa Hindu Parishad and the Hindu Youth Network. They exist to raise awareness in matters relating to Hindus but support no political party or candidate.[1]

Nepal[edit]

The HSS was established in Nepal around 1992 by a group of Nepali students who were influenced by leaders of the Hindu nationalist RSS while studying in India. The two bodies share a similar Hindutva ideology. The HSS are reluctant to clarify their sources of financial support other than to say that members donate what they can. Their presence is particularly prevalent in the Terai region and they have regimented programs of education, dissemination of ideology and exercise as elsewhere in the world.[2]

The Nepali HSS has been among several groups campaigning for a reversal of Nepal's 2006 decision to become a secular state after after years of being ruled by a Hindu royal family. They say that the king had not favoured Hindus, that the decision was engineered by anti-Hindu groups, included communists and missionaries, and that in any event it was unnecessary because there had been no persecution of religious minorities under the previous system. Among their demands has been that only Hindus should be appointed to high official posts.[2]

United Kingdom[edit]

The UK HSS organisation was established in 1968.[3] Consequent on claims made in a television broadcast by ITV's Exposure programme in the UK on 18 February 2015, the Charity Commission for England and Wales announced that it was opening an investigation into the HSS and two other organisations that were featured.[4] The two other organisations claimed to serve Muslim and Sikh communities.[5]

Among the claims against the HSS made in the broadcast was that a tutor at a summer camp told children that "the number of good Muslims 'can be counted on fingers'" and that "to destroy Hindu history is the secret conspiracy of the Christians". HSS responded by saying that it "promotes diversity and unity" and that it was conducting an internal investigation into the alleged comments "to ensure that those who made them are better informed, trained or prevented from making statements which may be interpreted as anti another community."[6]

United States[edit]

In the US, the HSS registered as a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) non-profit organisation in 1989.[7]

Presence elsewhere[edit]

The RSS announced in 2014 that there were plans to establish HSS chapters in countries such as Denmark, Finland, France, Italy, the Netherlands, and Norway. It claimed that the two organisations worked closely together and shared a similar ideology but were not as one.[8]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "FAQs". HSS Australia. 2015. Retrieved 2015-04-14. 
  2. ^ a b Mulmi, Amish Raj (2013). The Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh and Hindutva in Nepal. Centre for South Asian Studies (CSAS) and the Konrad Adenauer Foundation. pp. 22–32. 
  3. ^ "HSS UK". HSS UK. 2015. Retrieved 2015-04-14. 
  4. ^ "New charity investigations: Global Aid Trust and Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh (UK)". The Charities Commission. 18 February 2015. Retrieved 2015-04-14. 
  5. ^ "RSS-inspired charity, Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh, under probe in UK over ‘extremist’ views". The Indian Express. PTI. 20 February 2015. Retrieved 2015-04-14. 
  6. ^ "Exposure: Hatred and extremist views in charities". ITV. 18 February 2015. Retrieved 2015-04-14. 
  7. ^ "FAQ". HSS US. 2015. Retrieved 2015-04-14. 
  8. ^ Uttam, Kumar (8 October 2014). "RSS plans to join Hindu groups, expand in the West". Hindustan Times. Retrieved 2015-04-15.