Indian govt failed to stop attacks on minorities which killed 10 in 2017, says Human Rights Watch report
Human Rights Watch on Thursday said the Indian government failed to stop or credibly investigate vigilante attacks against minority religious communities in 2017 which killed 10 people.
New Delhi: Human Rights Watch on Thursday said the Indian government failed to stop or credibly investigate vigilante attacks against minority religious communities in 2017 which killed 10 people.
Many senior leaders of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) publicly promoted Hindu supremacy and ultra-nationalism at the expense of fundamental rights for all Indians, as per the World Report 2018, released on Thursday.
"Extremist Hindu groups, many claiming to be affiliated with the BJP, committed numerous assaults against Muslims and other minority communities in response to rumours that minority group members sold, bought, or killed cows for beef," it said in a statement.
"Instead of taking prompt legal action against the attackers, police frequently filed complaints against the victims under laws banning cow slaughter. There were at least 38 such attacks in 2017, and 10 people were killed."
Indian authorities had proven themselves unwilling to protect minority religious communities and other vulnerable groups from frequent attack, said Meenakshi Ganguly, South Asia director at Human Rights Watch.
"There needs to be a serious effort to prevent future attacks and to prosecute all those responsible for the violence," the statement quoted Ganguly as saying.
The report also highlighted the fact that Indian authorities harassed and brought charges, including for sedition and criminal defamation, against activists, academics, journalists, and others critical of government actions or policies.
"Threats of legal action and arbitrary corruption investigations put increasing pressure on journalists and media outlets to self-censor," as per the statement.
It also said the state governments resorted to "blanket internet shutdowns in misguided attempts to prevent violence or social unrest or to maintain law and order".
"By November, they had imposed 60 internet shutdowns, 27 of these in Jammu and Kashmir," it said.
The government also used the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA), which governs access to foreign funding for nongovernmental organisations, to cut off funds and harass activists and human rights defenders, it added.
Even after amending laws against sexual violence, girls and women still face barriers in reporting such crimes, including humiliation at police stations and hospitals, lack of protection and more, it said.
It also said India passed up chances to demonstrate leadership on human rights issues at international forums such as the United Nations Human Rights Council and General Assembly.
Find latest and upcoming tech gadgets online on Tech2 Gadgets. Get technology news, gadgets reviews & ratings. Popular gadgets including laptop, tablet and mobile specifications, features, prices, comparison.
JP Nadda slams P Chidambaram over comment on Article 370, says Congress using 'divide India' strategy
Chidambaram had said that the 'arbitrary and unconstitutional' decisions of the Narendra Modi government on Jammu and Kashmir must be rescinded
The NBA statement comes days after the CBI had registered an FIR into alleged manipulation of TRP on the basis of a reference from the Uttar Pradesh Police
While one militant was killed following a cordon and search operation at Melhura in Zainapora area of Shopian on Tuesday, three militants were killed by security forces in another operation in Harkipora area of Pulwama district