AWAAZ (South Asia Watch)

AWAAZ – SOUTH ASIA WATCH is a UK-based secular network of individuals and organisations committed to monitoring and combating religious hatred in South Asia and in the UK.

Awaaz was established following the violence and killings of Indian citizens, mainly Muslims, in the state of Gujarat after February 2002. The Gujarat carnage was a turning point in the recent history of India and showed how genocidal Hindutva forces have established a firm hold on many aspects of Indian society.

Awaaz campaigns against religious fundamentalist control of the state, civil society, political life and personal freedoms. Awaaz campaigns for secular democratic state institutions and civil life where all citizens have the right to live in peace and security and fully participate in the political and civil process and decision–making.

Awaaz stands for peaceful resolution of problems between South Asian countries, opposes violation of human rights, and opposes discrimination based on caste, gender, religion, region, ethnicity, race, sexuality and other factors. Awaaz unreservedly condemns the political use of religion to attack individuals and minorities including Muslims in India, Christians and dalits across South Asia, Hindus in Bangladesh and Shias and Ahmaddis in Pakistan.

Objectives

  • AWAAZ will monitor and campaign against religious hatred and intolerance (including religious nationalism, fundamentalism and communalism) and religious violence in South Asia and the UK.
  • AWAAZ will campaign against violations of human (including women’s) rights in South Asia, whether undertaken by the state or by civil institutions.
  • Awaaz will establish relevant groups and structures, and seek resources to enable its work to continue on a long-term basis.
  • AWAAZ, through its network, will provide support, advice and information to victims of religious hatred and violence in South Asia and the UK.
  • AWAAZ will work against the influence of religious extremist (including religious nationalist, fundamentalist and communalist) organisations in political, social policy and service-providing agencies in the UK and abroad.
  • AWAAZ will work with and encourage the active participation of a wide and diverse range of organisations and individuals in order to further its aims and objectives. This includes gaining support from political parites; MPs, councillors and MEPs; religious organisations; community, human rights, anti-racist, anti-fascist, legal and women’s groups; trade unions; cultural associations; academic centres; and prominent individuals.

Awaaz – South Asia Watch is supported by leading civil rights and community organisations in the UK and abroad, including Aaj Kay Naam, Asian Women’s Refuge, Friends of India / All India Christian Council (UK), Cambridge South Asia Forum, Campaign Against Racism and Fascism (CARF), Council of Indian Muslims (UK), Dalit Forum for Social Justice (UK), India Forum, Indian Muslim Federation (UK), Indian Workers Association (GB), National Civil Rights Movement (NCRM), Oxford South Asia Forum, People’s Unity, Southall Black Sisters, People’s Empowerment Alliance, Southall Monitoring Group, Women Against Fundamentalism and many more. Active members include Hindus, Sikhs, Jains, Buddhists, Muslims, Christians and people of no faith.

Please contact us for further details or visit the website at http://www.awaazsaw.org