Little India: Overseas Indian, NRI, Asian Indian, Indian American

Delegates from 150 Countries to Attend World Hindu Congress in Chicago

The event poster

Indian American lawmaker Tulsi Gabbard will chair the second World Hindu Congress, scheduled to be held in Chicago in September, which would be attended by leaders of several countries with a sizeable Hindu population, the organizers of the event said on April 30, the Hindustan Times reported. The mega event will commemorate 125 years of Swami Vivekananda’s Chicago address on Sep. 11, 1893.

Organized by the World Hindu Foundation, which is headed by former IIT alumnus Swami Vigyanand, the event is expected to be attended by over 2,000 Hindu delegates from over 50 countries.

Gabbard is also the co-chair of the House Congressional caucus — a group of House members with common legislative goals. “With all that’s happening in the world, the universal message of aloha – love, peace, respect and unity – is so needed. I am looking forward to working with you and seeing you soon,” the Democrat Congresswoman said in a video message to the organizers, the Times of India reported earlier.

The event, which is being billed as the biggest ever gathering of influential people of the Hindu community, including political leaders, corporate heads, and religious personalities from across the globe, is going to be held from Sept. 7 to Sept. 9, 2018. It will be centered around the theme, “Sumantrite Suvikrante” — Think Collectively, Achieve Valiantly. It will also feature an address from Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat.

The Indian politicians who are scheduled to attend the event include Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis. Among the religious leaders, Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama, Art of Living founder Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, and Pranav Pandya from Gayatri Parivar are expected to be present. The three-day event is also likely to see top corporate leaders from India and the United States, leaders from Fortune 500 companies, Bollywood and Hollywood stars.

The purpose of the event is to “ignite” global Hindu community for its political and economic empowerment, and make Hindus visible and respected across globe, Vigyanand said on the occasion of the first anniversary of Washington DC Chapter of World Hindu Economic Forum on April 30 .

“Hindus should be the dominant force in the world economy,” Vigyananand said at the event. “The day Hindus –- who constitute 16 per cent of the world population — become 16 per cent of the world economy, people would start listening to them (Hindus).”

The first WHC took place in New Delhi in November 2014, which was attended by 1,800 delegates from over 50 countries. The seven conferences organized then delved into how the values, creativity, and entrepreneurial spirit of the global Hindu community find expression in a variety of spheres, including economy, education, media, and politics, as well as the unique leadership and contributions of Hindu women and youth.