Govt rejects US report criticising India on religious freedom

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New Delhi: India on Tuesday trashed as "motivated" and "biased" a report by the US State Department on religious freedom that criticised the country for alleged attacks on minorities.

External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said such reports continue to be based on "misinformation and flawed understanding".

The annual report listed alleged attacks on religious minorities in India and expressed concerns over such incidents.

"We are aware of the release of the US State Department 2022 Report on International Religious Freedom. Regrettably, such reports continue to be based on misinformation and flawed understanding," Bagchi said.

"Motivated and biased commentary by some US officials only serves to undermine further the credibility of these reports," he said.

Bagchi was responding to media queries on the report.

"We value our partnership with the US and will continue to have frank exchanges on issues of concern to us," he said.

The report that documents the status of religious freedom in countries across the world was released on Monday.

A senior US official said far too many governments, including Russia, India, China and Saudi Arabia, continue to freely target faith community members.

"Far too many governments continue to freely target faith community members within their borders," Rashad Hussain, Ambassador at Large, Office of International Religious Freedom, told reporters at a news conference in Washington soon after the report was released by Secretary of State Anthony Blinken.

The report provides a fact-based, comprehensive view of the state of religious freedom in nearly 200 countries and territories around the world, Blinken said. PTI

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