The UN human rights chief, Michelle Bachelet, Tuesday voiced concern over Hindutwa attacks on religious minorities, including Muslims and Christians, and called on the Indian leaders to publicly condemn the ever-increasing incitement to hatred.
“In India, I am concerned by recent statements and actions expressing hatred and violence against religious minority communities,” she said in her annual report and update on recent developments around the world to the Human Rights Council.
“Notably,” the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights said, “at two events in December, Hindutva leaders called for the murder of Muslims, in a context purporting to make India a Hindu nation.” (Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his close associates have not condemned those statements, including one by monk Yati Narsinghanand Giri, that encouraged Hindus to carry out the genocide of Muslims.
In light of the rising violence against minorities in India (Muslims and Christians) & their characterization as “foreigners” – here is a beautiful painting from 1630 in the Deccan Style. Painted in what is now Telangana.
Adoration of the Christ Child. pic.twitter.com/EGwUjXht15
— Veena Dubal (@veenadubal) December 25, 2021
In this regard, Bachelet called for “full, transparent and prompt accountability” of those involved in hate speech. “Rising violence against the Christian community is also deeply concerning,” the rights chief said, adding that faith-based organizations recorded over 305 cases of attacks on Christians from January to November 2021, many involving Hindu-supremacist groups.
“Over the past year, problematic laws banning religious conversions have been enacted or proposed in several states,” she noted, pointing out that such laws might foster hatred or even violence.
“I urge India’s leaders to publicly condemn any form of hate speech and incitement to religious hatred, regardless of religious or ethnic origin,” the high commissioner added.