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United States expresses concern for religious freedom in India | India News

WASHINGTON: The United States has expressed concern about the current situation of religious freedom in India and raised the issue to Indian officials, said a senior State Department official.
Comments arose in the wake of widespread protests across India against the Citizens Amendment Act (CAA).
The senior State Department official, on condition of anonymity, said he had met with officials in India about what is happening in the nation and expressed concern.
“We are worried about what is happening in India. I have met with the Indian Foreign Minister. I have met with the Indian ambassador (to express my concern),” said the official on Wednesday, who was recently in India. .
The United States also “expressed its desire first to try to help and solve some of these problems,” the official said while Secretary of State Mike Pompeo launched an International Alliance of Religious Freedom of 27 nations.
“For me, the initial step we try to do in most places is to say what we can do to help you solve a problem in which there is no religious persecution. That is the first step, I just say if we can work with you in this, “said the official.
India argues that the Indian Constitution guarantees fundamental rights to all its citizens, including its minority communities.
It is widely recognized that India is a vibrant democracy where the Constitution provides protection to religious freedom and where democratic government and the rule of law further promote and protect fundamental rights, said a senior official of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
According to the CAA, members of the Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, Parsi and Christian communities who came from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan until December 31, 2014 after religious persecution will obtain Indian citizenship.
The Indian government has emphasized that the new law will not deny any right to citizenship, but has been presented to protect oppressed minorities in neighboring countries and give them citizenship.
In defense of the CAA, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said last month that the law is not about taking away citizenship, but about granting it.
“We should all know that any person of any religion from any country in the world who believes in India and its Constitution can apply for Indian citizenship through due process. There is no problem in that,” he said.

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