India tells US to shush after the State Department called out the Modi government's passivity to 'hate' against minorities

  • India has rejected a US State Department report that made critical comments on the status of minorities in the South Asian country.
  • US has no 'locus standi', said a spokesperson from the Ministry of External Affairs.
  • This is a fresh front in the India-US bilateral ties that has come to the fore ahead of Mike Pompeo's visit.
India has rejected a US State Department report that made critical comments on the status of minorities in the South Asian country. US has no 'locus standi', said a spokesperson from the Ministry of External Affairs. This is a fresh front in the India-US bilateral ties that has come to the fore ahead of US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo's visit to India.

"We see no locus standi for a foreign entity/government to pronounce on the state of our citizens' constitutionally protected rights," he said. "India is proud of its secular credentials, its status as the largest democracy and a pluralistic society with a longstanding commitment to tolerance and inclusion," Kumar said.

This was in response to a query on the latest 'Report on International Religious Freedom', published by the State Department, which said, ", “There were reports by non-governmental organizations (NGOs) that the government sometimes failed to act on mob attacks on religious minorities, marginalized communities, and critics of the government. Some senior officials of the Hindu-majority Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) made inflammatory speeches against minority communities… According to some NGOs, authorities often protected perpetrators from prosecution. As of November, there were 18 such attacks, and eight people [were] killed during the year.”

Pressure tactic

The report is further significant as it has been released just days ahead of Pompeo's visit to India. He will arrive in New Delhi on Tuesday on a three-day visit ahead of his trips to Japan and South Korea.

There are multiple points of difference between the Donald Trump and Narendra Modi administrations. This report may sour the mood in the Indian government before the bilateral talks, which will include a whole host of contentious issues from trade tariffs to curbs on US visas for Indians, from defence deals with Russia to oil purchases from Iran, from the difficulties faced by Indian drug makers and IT services exporters in US to the new e-commerce policy that will make life difficult for the likes of Amazon and Walmart (which owns Flipkart) in India, and these are just a few of the top issues.

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With inputs from IANS


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