Human rights

“Encourage India to promote respect for human rights”: US in the row of the prophets

First published June 17, 2022 at 9:35 a.m. IST

The United States criticized statements against the Prophet Muhammad made Thursday by members of India’s ruling party, which sparked outrage among Muslim nations.

“We condemn the reprehensible remarks made by two BJP leaders, and we were delighted to see the party officially reject these remarks,” State Department spokesman Ned Price told reporters. “We frequently interact at the highest level with the Indian government on human rights issues, including freedom of religion or belief, and we encourage India to promote respect for human rights,” he added.

Nupur Sharma, spokesperson for Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s BJP, released statements against the Prophet Muhammad on May 26 that sparked protests across the Islamic world.

The statements sparked diplomatic outrage from wealthy Arab governments that often have close ties to India. Protesters in Bangladesh, a staunch ally of India, have demanded an official reprimand from Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.

Read also | Prophet Row: Protesters demand arrest of Nupur Sharma and Naveen Jindal across India

The BJP has suspended Sharma along with Naveen Kumar Jindal, another party official accused of making inflammatory remarks regarding the Prophet Muhammad.

Since the late 1990s, the United States has tried to strengthen its ties with India, believing that the two largest democracies in the world have common interests, especially in the face of a growing China. The United States, on the other hand, has cautiously expressed concern over human rights in India as Prime Minister Modi is accused of promoting policies targeting the Muslim minority.

Read also | Prophet controversy: Iran happy with Indian government’s stance on remark

Meanwhile, the terrorist group Al-Qaeda has threatened to carry out suicide attacks in several places in India, including Delhi and Mumbai. The letter, dated June 6, comes after a controversy erupted after a few leaders of the Bharatiya Janata Party made remarks to the Prophet Muhammad.

According to the letter, the terror group has threatened to carry out attacks in the nation’s capital as well as in Mumbai, Uttar Pradesh and Gujarat, saying it will “fight for the honor of the Prophet”.

Also Read: Prophet’s Row Fallout: Only Authorized BJP Spokespersons Will Participate in TV Debates

Last updated June 17, 2022 at 9:35 am IST