The report designates 15 countries including India and other countries of Asia and South-East Asia as “countries of particular concern” with respect to religious freedom.
Source: arindam bagchi – Bing images
The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) has rejected a report published by a US government commission on religious freedom calling it “biassed and inaccurate,” on Saturday, July 2. New Delhi further reprimanded the publisher calling it “a motivated agenda” and lacking in understanding India’s maxims. Published by the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF), the report designated India along with 14 other nations as “countries of particular concern” with respect to Freedom of religion.
Admonishing such prejudiced claims, MEA spokesperson Arindam Bagchi stated that, “We have seen the biassed and inaccurate comments on India by the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF). These comments reflect a severe lack of understanding of India and its constitutional framework, its plurality and its democratic ethos.”
To quote him further, “Regrettably, USCIRF continues to misrepresent facts time and again in its statements and reports in pursuance of its motivated agenda. Such actions only serve to strengthen concerns about the credibility and objectivity of the organisation,” Bagchi added
Released in June, the report recommended to the Biden Administration to designate India, China, Pakistan, Afghanistan and 11 other countries as “countries of particular concern.” Though the recommendation is not binding on the US government yet, USCIRF Commissioner Anurima Bhargava alleged that the Indian government officials were encouraging religious persecution of Muslims and Christians with prolific mob violence.
However, the reporting authority in question has on various occasions been called out for perceptions of a pro-Christian bias and is merely an advisor. Though such impetuous claims may not have much impact on the advancing India–US relations, yet can portray India, a country where unity in diversity is celebrated, in a bad light.
Such claims should be put to rest inevitably, as the world fights the rise of organisational crimes, pandemics, epidemics and “the Dragon in the East.”