U.S. Congress report slams India on religious freedom

India stays on 'Tier 2' of 'countries of concern' list.

Updated - November 17, 2021 02:03 am IST

Published - April 30, 2015 03:36 pm IST

The annual U.S. Congressional Report on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) has criticised the government for India’s record, observing that “religiously motivated and communal violence reportedly have increased for three consecutive years.” The report also singles out the NDA government in its findings saying that “since the election, religious minority communities have been subject to derogatory comments by politicians linked to the ruling BJP and numerous violent attacks and forced conversions by Hindu nationalist groups such as the RSS and VHP.”

The Commission that is a precursor to the US State Departments own report on international religious freedom, issued its report on Thursday, deciding to keep India on its “Tier 2” list of countries, where it has been since 2009.

The Ministry of External Affairs didn’t react to the report, and has in the past said that it was an internal report of the U.S. legislature. However it remains to be seen if the government, and particularly the BJP will react given that it has been specifically named in the report, while there are other specific references to the “Ghar Wapsi” programmes in 2014 as well as a reference to a lack of redressal for the 2002 Gujarat riots, communal riots in Muzaffarabad in 2013, Odisha Hindu-Christian violence in 2007 and the 1984 anti-Sikh pogroms.

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