Prime minister Narendra Modi is on scheduled trip to Netherlands as part of 3 nation tour. On his visit to Netherlands Modi would be meeting up Prime Minister Mark Rutte and discuss bilateral economic co-operation, counter terrorism and climate change.
On the eve of his visit an Humans rights organization Landlijke India Werkgroep(India commite of Netherlands) have written an open letter to prime minister Mark Rutte flagging concern about rising wave of violence against minorities in India.
“Under Modi’s Hindu-nationalist government, the marginalization of minority groups such as Dalits (‘untouchables’), Christians and Muslims has risen significantly. Especially these groups, together form more than a third of the Indian population, are nowadays regularly victims of extremist Hindu groups who respond by violence to every alleged abuse of cows.”
The organization further alleged the refusal of visa’s to Dutch journalists to India under Modi.
The issues in the LIW letter was raised in the Dutch parliament by Joel Voordewind, a parliamentarian, on June 22 in response to the Dutch government’s concern over India’s decision to regulate foreign funding to important NGOs earlier this year, thewire reported.
He further questioned the Dutch parliament, whether it was willing to discuss the reported prevention of civil society groups, especially through the “restrictive Foreign Contribution Regulation Act” with Modi.
“Recently, for example, Dalit organization Navsarjan was unable to receive money from foreign donors. Navsarjan carries out development programs for Dalits and supports Dalits to stand up for their rights.”
The letter is bound to remain as blot on the Modi government ahead of his visit to bolster ties with Netherlands.
Narendra Modi’s US visit
United States Senator, Marco Rubio, who represents Florida in the Upper House, cautioned Prime Minister Narendra Modi to ensure that “religious freedoms” remain a concern for the Indian government.
He expressed his opinion in a tweet.
I welcome Indian PM Modi to the US. Strong US-India ties are in our long-term interest, but religious freedom must also remain a priority.
— Senator Rubio Press (@SenRubioPress) June 26, 2017
The senator’s comments came as the meeting between Modi and US President, Donald Trump, was a warm one. Both the leaders stressed on the need to fight terrorism, which was followed up by the US State Department designating Hizbul Mujahideen commander Syed Salahuddin, a Pakistani national, as a “Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT)”.
In 2016, Rubio, a member of the Republican Party, had made a run for the White House but lost the ticket for President to Donald Trump.
He echoed the views of former President, Barack Obama, who after his visit to India in 2015 had said, “Michelle and I returned from India — an incredible, beautiful country, full of magnificent diversity — but a place where, in past years, religious faiths of all types have, on occasion, been targeted by other peoples of faith, simply due to their heritage and their beliefs — acts of intolerance that would have shocked Gandhiji, the person who helped to liberate that nation.”
(updated on 27/July/2017)