The Dialogue

Academia / Education

Ms.Aarti Dhand – University of Toronto

Post On:July 31, 2022

Hi Ms.Arti,

This is in reference to your statement in a recent article on CBC. Wish to first ask if you said the following as reported by CBC reporter Lisa Xing? “For Arti Dhand, an associate professor at the University of Toronto’s religious studies department, specializing in South Asian religions, including Hinduism, seeing the poster was a little bit personally jarring, but not in a terribly offensive way.”

If that is accurate kindly answer the following questions,
a) When that poster has offended a billion Hindus why would you say that its not offensive?
b) If you stand by that then we wish to know in what capacity did you say that line? As a academic or Are you speaking on behalf of UTT or in your individual capacity?
d) We see you teach Hindu epics. do u see them from a religious perspective, mythology, or history?
d) Are you a practicing Hindu? To which sampradaya do you belong to?
e) Did you speak to any Hindu religious leaders of Canada before releasing that statement.

You statement as above to CBC stands to dilute the concerns of Hindus of Canada and offends / violates our religious space. It almost sounds like you are fueling the forces that have demonstrated un-inhibited hatred towards Hindus in Canada. Its borderline Hindu Phobia.

I guess you are civil enough to respond. That’s the belief and hope!

Gopala Krishna
Director – Dwarapalakas


arti 2

& Her academic quality response:( she has not answered any questions but instead sent a political letter, that is more of a emotional outburst of a academically compromised person!)

This was her response!

Mr. Krishna,

I have not read the article, nor do I wish to, but the word “personally” should have indicated to you that (as I told the reporter), while I can completely understand and respect why some Hindus are offended, I PERSONALLY found the image mostly jarring.

Please do not presume to tell me who or what I am, and what is my relationship to Hinduism. Regardless of your claim to being its self-designated “gatekeeper”, you do not own Hinduism. You do not speak for all Hindus. And you are by no means the singular voice of a very diverse tradition that has thrived and evolved over millennia.

I have immense love, admiration, and respect for Hindu wisdom. Your efforts to police people’s thoughts and expressions, coupled with needlessly extreme and hyperbolic language, only do it a disservice.

I would hope that you are civil enough to refrain from ascribing characterizations and motives to people you do not know. Please do not contact me again.

Our mailer to Dept of Religion on 6th August:

Reference: https://www.cbc.ca/news/entertainment/leena-manimekalai-kaali-film-poster-hindu-right-1.6519758

We request readers to see the tone and content of her reply! I did not accuse here, just asked a few questions. Instead of responding to questions she responds to personal attacks, like a politician yet claims to be an academic! This is the quality of academicians at UTT. And she in the true spirit of democracy and free speech, advises me not to contact her again. So much for free speech! Dear Mr.Arti we are not desperate to contact you, never did earlier, but reserve the right to ask you questions involving Public propriety. Contrary to your autocratic nature, you still do not have any right to stop us from doing so!