HR bodies write open letter in NYT highlighting discrimination against minorities in India

Washington, October 02 (KMS):Several rights bodies in the United States of America have come out to criticise the Indian Hindutva BJP-RSS government against the “religious persecution, discrimination and deadly mob violence” against minorities in India.

The bodies, including American Muslim Institution, Association of Indian Muslims of America Howard Cain, ICNA Council for Social Justice, Dalit Solidarity Forum Hindus for Human Rights, Indian American Muslim Council International Society for Peace and Justice and American Sikh Council, have written an open letter to the American people in the New York Times.

“In the India of 2022, under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the right-wing Hindu nationalist/Hindutva BJP and the RSS, millions of its citizens face religious persecution, discrimination and deadly mob violence,” the rights bodies said in the letter.

The rights bodies cited US Holocaust Memorial and other organizations, which have said, “Muslims, Christians and Sikhs face discrimination, frequent demolitions of homes, businesses, mosques, churches, and religious schools in BJP-ruled states, plus deadly mob violence – including lynchings”.

According to the letter, the recent Citizenship Amendment Act and National Register of Citizens are disenfranchising Muslims who have lived in India for centuries.

“The BJP government is attempting to illegally seize land and property set aside by Muslims for charitable purposes. They have also severely restricted the ability of non-Hindu religious institutions to receive foreign contributions, which support care and education for underserved Indians,” the letter read.

The letter also said, “Dalits (formerly ‘untouchables’) and India’s Adivasi (indigenous) peoples face discrimination and opression, including killings and rape, on a regular basis.”

“The Indian judiciary and police are filled with BJP/RSS loyalists and are doing little to nothing to stop atrocities against religious minorities. The constitution, religious freedom, sanctity of places of worship, property, the lives and the honor of the minorities do not matter as long as the BJP is in power in India,” the letter further read.

“The constitutions of India and the United States are beacons of hope for human rights and religious freedom. All of us should stand up against anti-democratic and extremist policies. Please contact your members of Congress and the Biden Administration, and urge them to hold the Indian government accountable for its commitment to human rights and religious freedom,” it added. KMS

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