American advertising company refused to run digital advertisements for extremist Hindu groups

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NEW YORK, Aug 04 : Coalition of Muslim groups in the United States has declared that a top American advertising company has refused to run digital advertisements for the extremist Hindu groups planning to showcase images of their god Ram on screens in New York’s iconic Times Square on Aug. 5, when the temple’s groundbreaking ceremony takes place in Ayodhya.

In a press release, the coalition said that ‘Branded Cities’, the company which manages digital advertisement board for Nasdaq, an American stock exchange, in Times Square, had agreed not to run Hindutva group’s advertisements following its representations.

The coalition comprises of Indian Minorities Advocacy Network ( ImanNet), Justice for All, Coalition of Americans for Pluralism in India (CAPI), North American Indian Muslim Association (NAIMA), Islamic Circle of North America -Social Justice (ICNASJ) and The International Society for Peace and Justice.

These groups have been contacting on the Mayor of New York, the City Council of New York , the governor, senators and members of House of Representatives to stop the right wing Hindu groups from advertising on Times Square billboards.

The Muslim groups have come together in US as a coalition to promote the cause of Babri Masjid, which was destroyed by Hindu hard-liners in December 1992, sparking massive violence that left some 2,000 people, most Muslims, dead. The Indian Supreme Court’s verdict paved the way for the building of a temple in place of the demolished mosque.

The court also ordered that Muslims be given 5 acres of land to build a new mosque at a nearby site. But the ruling disappointed Muslims, who comprise around 14% of Hindu-majority India’s 1.3 billion people.

According to the press release put out by the coalition, Dennis Levine of Branded Cities, confirmed the decision not to run the advertisements. The company “also reassured that Branded Cities and Nasdaq oppose the demolition of Babri Masjid and will never allow any supremacist groups to run their advertisements”.

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