2010-11-19 15:15:28

US report lauds religious freedom in India with some exception

(November 19, 2010) India has been rated high on religious freedom by a United States report on human rights, which, however, expressed concern about the communal forces present in some parts of the country. In its International Religious Freedom Report 2010 released on Wednesday, the State Department said that India’s ruling government of the United Progressive Alliance “generally respected, provided incentives for, and intervened to protect religious freedom.” The report, which was released by US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton stated that some states in the country “continue to be influenced by Hindutva.” “Despite government efforts to foster communal harmony, some extremists continued to view ineffective investigation and prosecution of attacks on religious minorities as a signal that they could commit such violence with impunity,” the report said. It noted that anti-conversion laws were prevalent in six of the 28 states in the country. It also quoted the All India Christian Council saying that attacks on Christians occurred in Orissa, Chhattisgarh, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, and Maharashtra. While there were no reports accusing the national government of committing abuses of religious freedom, human rights activists criticized it for alleged inaction regarding abuses committed by state and local authorities and private citizens.

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