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Thursday Jun 23 2022
By
Web Desk

US Congresswoman submits resolution against India 'promoting Hindu-nationalist agenda'

By
Web Desk
Representative Ilhan Omar, D-Minnesota, participates in a panel during a campaign event for Democratic presidential candidate Senator Bernie Sanders in Clive, Iowa.—AP
Representative Ilhan Omar, D-Minnesota, participates in a panel during a campaign event for Democratic presidential candidate Senator Bernie Sanders in Clive, Iowa.—AP 

US Congresswoman Ilhan Omar has submitted a resolution in the House of Representatives where she has condemned the human rights abuses in India and called for the Secretary of State Antony Blinken to designate India as a "country of particular concern".

The resolution appeared on Thursday on the congress website. It based its arguments on a report published recently by the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF).

The resolution referred to the USCIRF’s 2022 annual report stating that “the Indian government escalated its promotion and enforcement of policies — including those promoting a Hindu-nationalist agenda — that negatively affect Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, Dalits, and other religious minorities”.

The resolution quoted the report as saying that the "the government (of India) continued to systemise its ideological vision of a Hindu state at both the national and state levels through the use of both existing and new laws and structural changes hostile to the country’s religious minorities.”

The report pointed to the cases of the government's “repression of religious minority leaders and voices for religious pluralism in India" .

The resolution also highlighted the "severe risks of the Citizenship Amendment Act and the National Registry of Citizens for Indian Muslims, including the possibility of rendering millions stateless or subject to indefinite detention".

It quoted the report's mentions of the attacks made on the religious minorities, especially Muslims and Christians. 

"Many of these incidents were violent, unprovoked, and/or encouraged or incited by government officials," the report said.

Mentioning a press conference during which Blinken had called India the world's largest democracy, the resolution added that he had said: "We have seen rising attacks on people and places of worship."

“We are concerned with targeting of a number of religious communities in India, including Christians, Muslims, Sikhs, Hindu Dalits, and indigenous communities as well," Ambassador-at-Large for International Religious Freedom Rashad Hussain had said at the same conference. 

The resolution also cited the State Department's report published on June 2, 2022.

Read more: 'Indian policies discriminate against Muslims': US State Department report

The resolution was referred to the Committee on Foreign Affairs