The Hindu American Foundation (HAF) is pleased to announce its participation in the International Religious Freedom (IRF) Summit, taking place at the Omni Shoreham Hotel in Washington, DC, July 13-15, 2021.

As a convening partner of the 2021 IRF Summit, HAF will highlight the 1971 Bengali Hindu Genocide, where in the early morning hours of March 25th, the Pakistan Army launched a military invasion and genocidal campaign in East Pakistan, present-day Bangladesh, that resulted in over 3 million people killed, over 200,000 women raped, and over 10 million people displaced, the majority being Hindu.

Entitled “Religious Freedom in Bangladesh 1971-2021: From Genocide to Today,” guests will hear from an expert panel of speakers who will discuss the 1971 genocide and its ramifications, how Bangladesh turned away from its secular constitution in 1988 and declared Islam its official state religion, and the status of Hindus, Buddhists, Christians and other religious minorities in Bangladesh today. 

Panelists include Dr. Richard Benkin, independent human rights activist and author of A Quiet Case of Ethnic Cleansing: The Murder of Bangladesh’s Hindus; Dr. Sachi Dastidar, Professor, State University of NY and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the India Subcontinent Partition Project (ISPaD), and Deepali Kulkarni, HAF Director of Human Rights. Taniel Koushakjian, HAF Director of Public Policy, will serve as panel moderator.

This event will be held in person at the Omni Shoreham Hotel, Congressional Room, Washington, DC, and will be webcast live via Zoom and on the HAF YouTube Channel. Registration is encouraged as participants who register and attend via Zoom will be able to participate in the live question and answer session following the panel presentations.

For more information about the 1971 Bengali Hindu Genocide, visit, and for more information about the IRF Summit, visit and follow @IRFSummit.