‘Kashmir is no longer a Hindu country’
The Indian government on Friday said it has taken “strong action” to tackle the “invalid claims” made against the country by Hindu nationalist groups over the past few years.
The Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, said in a speech in New Delhi that the government was “working hard to counter this”.
India is home to more than 100 million Hindus, and Hindus make up around one-fifth of the population.
It has been widely criticised for what some say is an unfair portrayal of Hinduism in the media and the way it is portrayed in the textbooks and films of Indian schools.
Mr Modi said the government would now be “comprehensive and effective” in ensuring the country’s “cultural dimensions” and its “cultural competencies” would be protected.
The prime minister said the country had taken “unprecedented measures” in response to the recent attacks and the police action, and said it was now focusing on tackling “inappropriate” claims.
He said the attacks on the Hindu temple in Gujarat in 2014, when Muslims were killed in the attack, were the “most blatant case” of intolerance.
Mr Trump’s administration has taken a more conciliatory tone towards India, which it has accused of backing terrorism and promoting extremism.
Mr Bharara said in his speech on Friday that the Trump administration was now “seeking a lasting partnership” with India, but that the relationship had to be “a genuine partnership”.
“There can be no friendship that cannot be based on mutual respect,” he said.
“There is no country that can exist with a peaceful future if India and the United States remain adversaries, at war, at loggerheads and not friends.”
India has been the subject of repeated attacks by extremist groups.
The Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has been accused of killing more than 20 people in a string of attacks in India since 2016.