Washington: The United States said on Tuesday that India, the world’s largest democracy, is home to people of many faiths and would continue to encourage it to uphold its commitment to guarantee religious freedom for all. Noting that the State Department’s annual report on international religious freedom revealed “some concerns,” US State Department spokesman Ned Price also said he would continue to closely monitor the state. of religious freedom in all countries, including India.
The United States has designated 12 countries, including China, Pakistan and Myanmar, as “countries of particular concern” for the current state of religious freedom. Announcing this on Friday, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said governments and non-governmental forces around the world are harassing, threatening, imprisoning and even killing people based on their religion.
On the question of not including India in this list, Foreign Office spokesman Ned Price said that India is the largest democracy in the world and is home to people of many religions. Price told reporters on Tuesday, “India is certainly the biggest democracy in the world.” There, people of several religions live together. In the context of India, we have taken note of some of the concerns raised in our annual report on international religious freedom. We will continue to closely monitor the state of religious freedom in all countries, including India.
He said the administration of US President Joe Biden will continue to encourage the Indian government to fulfill its commitments to ensure religious freedom for all. He said: “We will be in regular contact with the authorities for the measures to be taken to maintain religious freedom. As the two largest democracies in the world (America and India), we are committed to a concrete project.
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Price said it was the same project that Secretary of State Blinken mentioned earlier. This project, as envisioned by our founders, required a perfect partnership. It is a project of the two countries.
Significantly, India had earlier dismissed claims by foreign governments and human rights groups about the gradual erosion of civil liberties in the country. The Indian government has asserted that India has well-established democratic practices and strong institutions to protect the rights of all.
Keywords: America, India, Religious
FIRST POST: 08 December 2022, 10:01 IST