“My Government’s Only Religion is India First,” says PM Narendra Modi.
Elected last year, Narendra Modi has done a ton of amazing things for the country of India. During his first year as Prime Minister, their government has passed 40 bills, as well as made efforts to improve the health of the poor, reduce their carbon footprint and prevent the loss of their forests. He has many upcoming plans in terms of international relationships, as well as protecting the interests of his citizens. He sat down with TIME magazine to talk about all of that, as well as his opinions on religion’s place in government.
When Obama and the First Lady visited India, he made a statement that “India will succeed so long as it is not splintered along the lines of religious faith.” The Prime Minister explained his country’s history.
India doesn’t start wars based on religion, ethnicity or anything else. “Our constitution has not come out of any abstract insularity. It essentially reflects our own civilizational ethos of equal respect for all religions.” It is simply not their way to mix religion, politics and the government. Hinduism is a way of life; a “beautiful definition” given by the Indian Supreme Court. He compares the two, detailing ways that his way of life is similar to the way their government system works. Their philosophies to be happy and healthy and live are alike as well as their depth and diversity. “The one who does idol worship is a Hindu and other who hates idol worship can also be a Hindu.” Many minority religions have felt apprehensive after some of the things that have been said as well as done by members of Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party.
Modi says that these concerns are unwarranted, at least while he is in power, adding that as far as he “and my government are concerned, we absolutely do not believe in this type of ideology. And wherever an individual view might have been expressed with regard to a particular minority religion, we have immediately negated that.” As far as “the government is concerned, there is only one holy book which is the constitution of India. The unity and integrity of the country are the topmost priorities. All religions and all communities have the same rights and it is my responsibility to ensure their complete and total protection. My government will not tolerate or accept any discrimination based on caste, creed or religion.”