HAF Hosts Panel on Hinduism in the Media

Fremont, CA (March 9, 2012) - The Hindu American Foundation (HAF) hosted its first Northern California Quarterly Speakers Series event of 2012 this past Sunday, March 4 at the Fremont Hindu Temple. The program featured a lively panel discussion on the representation of Hinduism and the Hindu community in the media, and comprised members of both the mainstream and Indian media.
 
Panelists included Dr. Romesh Japra, Founder and Publisher of India Post Weekly, Matt Artz, Reporter for Bay Area News Group, Ravi Kapur, President of Diya TV and VP of KAXT - Channel 1, and Diana Rohini LaVigne, Freelance Journalist and Chair of the South Asian Journalists Association’s Bay Area Chapter. The panel was moderated by Samir Kalra, HAF’s Director and Senior Fellow for Human Rights.
 
"The Hindu community has for many years felt frustrated with the negative portrayal of Hinduism in the media” said Dr. Hema Patel, HAF Northern California Working Group Member and Co-Coordinator of the event. “This event was therefore a great opportunity for the media to directly address many of the concerns of Hindu Americans.”
 
Among the topics discussed were the disparities between coverage of Hinduism compared to other religious groups and differences in how the ethnic and mainstream media approached stories on Hinduism. The panelists also talked about the the need for community members to proactively reach out to the media.
 
"You need to also speak your voice and tell the media what you want to hear more about,” Diana Rohini LaVigne told the audience. “We rely on you to tell us these great stories that are lying under the radar that we haven’t spoken about.”