Asking Cisco to Reinstate Funding:

(Letter to Editor, India West, March 14th, 2003, by Janet Abelson, San Mateo, CA, USA.)

I have written to Cisco and Oracle corporations regarding their suspension of matching funds to IDRF in the wake of the recent Campaign to Stop Funding Hate report (I-W, Dec. 6). Following is my message (in part) to them:

I am writing you to express my deep concern about the movement in your company and others to deprive the India Development and Relief Fund of its eligibility to receive matching contributions from your company's program by decertifying this charity in corporate America. The IDRF has a long and noble record in the area of humanitarian aid. For 14 years the IDRF has directly benefited tens of thousands of poor, disadvantaged, and disabled in India. The IDRF has sent millions of dollars to the victims of the Gujarat earthquake in 2001, and several hundred thousand to the victims of the Orissa cyclone several years ago. The fund has supported the education of tribal youth, health clinics, hospitals and other services for Indian citizens in need. The work they do is humanitarian and non-discriminatory.

Perhaps you are unaware of the terror which the Hindu community is subjected to in India. There is a constant threat to one's person and property by Islamic extremists who believe that killing civilians is a justified means to further one's political and religious goals and beliefs. Perhaps you are unaware that it is these very people, Muslim extremists and their misguided supporters, who are asking you to deprive the IDRF of its certification and ability to receive matching corporate funds. It is those very people who have wrought destruction on the Hindu population of India through terror and violence who have made necessary many of the services provided by the IDRF.

I call on you to reject the call to disrupt the granting of matching funds to the IDRF. 1 ask you to reject the sham of Muslim extremists and their misinformed supporters who would have you believe that the victims of terror in India are those who are not entitled to support and aid. I call on you to reverse this absurd situation. Please block the de-certification of the IDRF as a charity in corporate America with eligibility to receive matching funds.