Anti-conversion laws in India, rise in hate speeches worrying: Antony Blinken

Washington. US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said that there has been a “worrying increase” in cases of anti-conversion laws, hate speeches and demolition of homes and places of worship of people of religious minority community in India. On the occasion of the release of the State Department’s annual report on international religious freedom, Blinken said on Wednesday that people around the world are struggling to protect religious freedom. The report said that senior US officials consistently expressed concerns about religious freedom issues with their counterparts in India in 2023.

The External Affairs Minister said, “In India, we have seen an alarming increase in the cases of anti-conversion laws, hate speech, demolition of houses and places of worship of people of religious minority communities. Along with this, people all over the world are struggling to protect religious freedom. ” The 2023 report on International Religious Freedom for India states that 10 out of 28 states have laws banning conversion of all religions. Some of these states also impose penalties against forced conversion for the purpose of marriage.

India has previously rejected the US State Department’s annual report on human rights, saying it was based on “misinformation and flawed understanding”. “Biased comments by some US officials further undermine the credibility of these reports,” the Foreign Ministry had said last year. In this year’s report, the US State Department said Christians and Muslims were arrested under laws banning forced conversions.

Religious groups say that in some cases members of religious minority communities have been harassed and jailed on false and fabricated charges. On Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s call for a nationwide Uniform Civil Code (UCC), the State Department said Muslim, Sikh, Christian and tribal leaders and officials of some state governments have opposed it on the grounds that it is part of a plan to turn the country into a “Hindu Rashtra”.

Disclaimer: CricketInFocus has not edited this news. This news has been published from PTI-language feed.



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