India’s Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, has come under fire from minority groups in his nation after remaining silent for weeks as acts of religious violence have been perpetrated.
Narendra Modi has come forward and said that the government will act against those who wish to incite violence against minority religions, saying that India will continue to welcome people of all religious backgrounds. However, his recent words have left some people feeling less than enthusiastic, as attacks against minority religions continue to occur.
A New Commitment
After a prolonged period of not speaking on the religion issue, Narendra Modi came out on Tuesday with powerful words for people who believe that the government is not enough to ensure religious freedom. One particular quote that has given people hope for a more inclusive religious experience came in the middle of the speech when Modi declared “My government will not allow any religious group, belonging to the majority or the minority, to incite hatred against others, overtly or covertly. Mine will be a government that gives equal respect to all religions.”
This speech continued to outline the idea that there will be freedom for all religions throughout the nation, with each one having something valuable and truthful to offer the culture. This powerful speech showed a line of solidarity that has been lacking in the nation of India since the inception of the ghar waspi program. After all, over a billion people within India identify as religions that are not Hinduism.
Negative Religious Campaigns
One of the reasons that this speech had such a potent effect on the listeners was that the ghar waspi campaign has taken ugly turns since it was implemented. Many citizens of India have felt pressured, if not threatened, to conform to Hinduism.
In recent months there have been a string of attacks against minority religions. While there have not been direct connections made to the ghar waspi campaign, the negative connotations attached to religious outsiders are seen as motivating factors in these attacks. Most recently, five churches were attacked in the city of Delhi and several others have been broken into and damaged.
Narendra Modi’s latest speech has created hope that such attacks will not only be publicly condemned, but can be ended in time. While some people have attributed Modi’s outrage to a recent trip by President Obama to the region, others believe that these statements have been a long time coming. Regardless, there is now an official voice behind the movement to end violence that is based in religion throughout India.