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Hindu temple vandalized with anti-Modi graffiti

New York, Dec 23 (IANS) A prominent Hindu temple in the US state of California has been vandalized by pro-Khalistan elements with anti-Modi graffiti, leaving the members of the community in shock.

The walls of Shree Swaminarayan Mandir in Newark, Bay Area, were spray painted on Friday with graffiti targeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi and eulogizing Khalistan leader Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale.

“Whatever happened last night was a clear act of vandalism and violence against the Indian community,” Chintan Pandya, a member of the temple, told CBS News.

He said the incident is “concerning” as it is the first time the temple has seen something like this ever since its opening almost two years ago.

“It is not safe for the community,” Pandya said, adding that the temple leaders will be having a special meeting to discuss the incident.

US-based advocacy organization, Coalition of Hindus of North America (CoHNA), said thorough and urgent action is needed to address growing Hinduphobia in the region.

“Freedom of religion means little when sacred spaces that are meant to be an oasis of peace and calm, are vandalized with no consequences. We are sad but not shocked — authorities, media and other groups have regularly downplayed or ignored the growing #Hinduphobia in the region,” CoHNA said in a post on X on Friday.

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