Indian-American Sonal Shah Accused Of Hindu Fundamentalism Demanded Help From Team Obama: WikiLeaks

October 18, 2016 12:15
Indian-American Sonal Shah Accused Of Hindu Fundamentalism Demanded Help From Team Obama: WikiLeaks

The Indian-American Sonal Shah, who was appointed to presidential transition team of Barack Obama had written a letter that an Indian Press has accused her of Hindu fundamentalism in 2008 to discredit her and having her quit, says the data released by the WikiLeaks.

A top economist, Shah, who was appointed to then president-elect Obama’s transition team in 2008, has written that the accusation of her being a right wing Hindu fundamentalists and that she supported Gujarat riots, was mainly aimed that discrediting Obama, the emails released by WikilLeaks on Sunday said.

On November 10, nearly a week after Obama became the first non-white male to win the US presidential elections, Shah wrote, “I am writing to get some guidance from you in managing India press frenzy about my alleged right-wing politics as terrorist tendencies.”

She had written, “There are hundreds of blog posts and articles on this and without any responses, the rumors are feeding on each other. More interestingly, they were planning a public campaign to embarrass the president-elect and have me resign. I had several calls from prominent folks in India saying the best way to counter the lies and rumors was to put something out there denying the allegations. Others suggested doing a controlled interview.”

The reports also said that Denis McDonough, who is currently the chief of Staff, asked her to draft defense for them to investigate it.

Shah was later appointed into the Obama Administration. She served as the Director of the Office of Social Innovation and Civic Participation in the White House from April 2009 to August 2011.

In an another email sent at the same night, Shah wrote, “A presidential transition is always a time of wild rumors and unfounded gossip, so I'd like to set to rest a few baseless reports that have been circulating on the Internet.”

She further wrote, “First, I've never been affiliated - in any way, shape or form - with any Indian political party or similar group. To clear up one false rumor: I've never been affiliated with the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP), the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), or any such organization. I've never been involved in Indian politics, and never intend to do so.”

“Second, my personal politics have nothing in common with the views espoused by such groups. I've always condemned any politics of division, of ethnic or religious hatred, of violence and intimidation as a political tool,” she had written.

She further wrote, “Third, some Internet rumours have attempted to link me to Hindu nationalist groups through a variety of tenuous connections: Relief work I'm proud to have helped coordinate following the Gujarat earthquake of 2001, or cultural and religious affiliations of some of my family members, or apolitical humanitarian work... I have no ties to any such groups, and never have.”

By Prajakt K.

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