In an official announcement, the state of Georgia in the United States has formally declared the month of October as ‘Hindu Heritage Month,’ aimed at acknowledging and honouring the valuable contributions made by the vibrant Hindu-American community residing within the state.
As reported by the news agency PTI, Georgia’s Governor, Brian Kemp, has issued a proclamation designating October as the period to commemorate ‘Hindu heritage.’ The proclamation emphasises that this celebration will revolve around the cultural and spiritual traditions deeply rooted in India that constitute Hindu heritage.
In a proclamation dated August 23rd, it was stated that “The vibrant Hindu American community has contributed tremendously to the vitality of the State of Georgia by enriching the lives of its citizens.”
Earlier this year, the state’s Assembly took a historic step by passing a resolution condemning Hinduphobia. This move made Georgia the inaugural American state to take legislative action against anti-Hindu prejudice.
The resolution duly acknowledged the multifaceted contributions of the Hindu community, such as Yoga, Ayurveda, meditation, culinary traditions, music, and arts, which have played a pivotal role in enriching the cultural tapestry of American society and the lives of countless individuals.
The Coalition of Hindus of North America (CoHNA), a Hindu advocacy group, warmly embraced Georgia’s decision and extended gratitude to Governor Kemp for his recognition of the Hindu community’s contributions across various sectors.
On X, formerly Twitter, the group expressed their appreciation, stating, “This was made possible by the untiring dedication of our friends at the Hindus of Georgia PAC. Hinduism has contributed greatly to the cultural milieu of America.”
However, PTI reported that the group also voiced concerns about the recent anti-caste discrimination bill passed by the California State Assembly.
This development has underscored a notable contrast between Georgia’s acknowledgement and the recent passage of #SB403, a bill aimed at addressing caste discrimination and bolstering protections for marginalised communities throughout the state, as reported by the news agency.
CoHNA, on X, expressed this juxtaposition, stating, “It is gratifying to see Georgia recognise the contribution of Hindu-Americans and Hinduism at the same time that California is targeting us with #SB403.”
Hindu Heritage Month, as outlined by the Hindu American Foundation, is celebrated on a global scale to spotlight Hinduism as a tradition and its substantial contributions to human society. Hinduism, which boasts approximately one billion adherents worldwide, stands as the third-largest religion globally, with an estimated three million Hindus currently residing in the United States.