WASHINGTON: The United States said Thursday that some Indian officials have supported attacks against religious minorities, in a rare if indirect criticism of the record of its emerging ally.
Unveiling an annual report on international religious freedom, Secretary of State Antony Blinken offered bleak assessments of several US adversaries including China, Iran and Myanmar.
But he said that elsewhere as well “the rights of religious minorities are under threat in communities around the world.”
“In India, the world’s largest democracy and home to a great diversity of faiths, we’ve seen rising attacks on people in places of worship,” Blinken said.
Rashad Hussain, the US ambassador at large for international religious freedom, added: “In India, some officials are ignoring or even supporting rising attacks on people and places of worship.”
In the report, the State Department pointed to laws restricting religious conversions, quoted accounts of discrimination against Muslims and Christians, and said that “politicians made inflammatory public remarks or social media posts about religious minorities.”
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Hindu nationalist government has championed a series of measures that critics have called discriminatory.