The government today condemned what it called “ill-informed comments” by senior US officials and alleged “vote bank tactics” in foreign relations in response to a US study on attacks on minorities in India. The assessment was also based on “motivated inputs and prejudiced perspectives,” according to the administration.
“We have noted the release of the US State Department 2021 Report on International Religious Freedom, and ill-informed comments by senior US officials. It is unfortunate that vote bank politics is being practised in international relations. We would urge that assessments based on motivated inputs and biased views be avoided,” said foreign ministry spokesperson Arindam Bagchi.
“As a naturally pluralistic society, India values religious freedom and human rights. In our discussions with the US, we have regularly highlighted issues of concern there, including racially and ethnically motivated attacks, hate crimes and gun violence,” the official asserted.
According to the US State Department’s 2021 Report on International Religious Freedom, attacks on minority populations in India continued throughout the year, including killings, assaults, and intimidation.
Secretary of State Antony Blinken delivered a report on the status and breaches of religious freedom around the world.
The report’s India section avoids expressing a judgment on the condition of religious minorities, instead documenting what has been reported in the media and by the Indian government. It also liberally recounts charges of attacks on numerous non-profit organizations and minority institutions, although it is generally mute on the findings of official investigations and the government’s response.
“Attacks on members of religious minority communities, including killings, assaults, and intimidation, occurred throughout the year. These included incidents of ‘cow vigilantism’ against non-Hindus based on allegations of cow slaughter or trade in beef,” said the India section of the report.
India has often said that no foreign government has the authority to remark on the country’s constitutionally protected rights.
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