Tulsi Gabbard, First Hindu American Congressional Leader Takes Oath on Bhagavad Gita as 113th Congress Convenes
WASHINGTON, DC, January 3, 2012 (Hindu American Foundation): Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI), the first Hindu elected to the U.S. House of Representatives, was sworn in today. Gabbard took her oath on the Bhagavad Gita, a sacred Hindu text, as she joined the 113th Congressional class. The oath was administrated by House Speaker John Boehner, who held the Gita for Gabbard. Gabbard said the copy she chose for her swearing in ceremony was one which she read nearly every day while serving as an officer in the Hawaii National Guard during the Iraq War as well as during her tenure as a State Representative and Honolulu City Councilwoman.
“I chose to take the oath of office with my personal copy of the Bhagavad-Gita because its teachings have inspired me to strive to be a servant-leader, dedicating my life in the service of others and to my country,” said Congresswoman Gabbard. “My Gita has been a tremendous source of inner peace and strength through many tough challenges in life, including being in the midst of death and turmoil while serving our country in the Middle East.”
“It’s exciting that this session we will have the opportunity to work with the first and only Hindu in Congress,” said Jay Kansara, HAF Associate Director of Government Affairs. “We are confident that Congresswoman Gabbard will join many of her colleagues in prioritizing the curbing of human rights violations against minority Hindu communities globally as well as rigorously upholding religious liberty and promoting religious pluralism right here at home.”