Citizenship (Amendment) Bill: Bangladesh faults India

Rejects allegations that minorities are facing persecution there

December 11, 2019 10:03 pm | Updated December 12, 2019 12:13 am IST - Dhaka

A.K. Abdul Momen.

A.K. Abdul Momen.

Bangladesh Foreign Minister A.K. Abdul Momen on Wednesday said the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill could weaken India’s historic character as a secular nation and rejected the allegations that the minorities were facing religious persecution in his country.

“India is historically a tolerant country which believes in secularism [but] their historic position will be weakened if they deviate from that,” Mr. Momen told reporters.

He said Bangladesh and India were enjoying close friendly relations that was termed as “golden chapter” of bilateral ties and “so, naturally our people [Bangladeshis] expect that India won’t do anything that could create anxiety among them”.

Mr. Momen termed as “untrue the allegations of minority repression in Bangladesh by Home Minister Amit Shah, saying whoever gave them the information, it is not correct”.

“Many important decisions of our country are taken by persons belonging to different religions...we never judge anybody by their religion,” he said.

Mr. Momen said Bangladesh maintained strong religion harmony and ensured that followers of all faiths enjoy same rights in every area. He said during his talks earlier on Thursday with U.S. Ambassador in Dhaka Earl R Miller, the envoy expressed America’s concern about the CAB.

“They [U.S.] are being critical about that [as well] . . . they believe India weakened its position by doing it [passing the Bill],” he said.

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