India on Tuesday (2 May) rejected the "biased and motivated" report by the US Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) that alleged "severe violations" of religious freedom in the country.
In its annual report on religious freedom, the USCIRF asked the US State Department to designate India as a "country of particular concern" (CPC) on the status of religious freedom. Further, it also recommended CPC designation for Nigeria, Syria, and Vietnam and Afghanistan.
The USCIRF has been making similar recommendations to the US State Department since 2020, which have not been accepted.
The recommendations of USCIRF are not mandatory for the State Department.
In its India section of the latest report, the USCIRF alleged that in 2022, religious freedom conditions in India continued to worsen.
In response to media queries regarding comments on India in USCIRF’s annual report, Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said, "The US Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) continues to regurgitate biased and motivated comments about India, this time in its 2023 annual report".
"We reject such misrepresentation of facts, which only serves to discredit USCIRF itself," he said.
"We would urge USCIRF to desist from such efforts and develop a better understanding of India, its plurality, its democratic ethos and its constitutional mechanisms," Bagchi added.
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