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UNHRC Special Rapporteur's report links inflammatory remarks by BJP leaders to rise in vigilantism in India

ANI  |  New Delhi [India] 

[India], Sept 12 (ANI): E. Achiume, the Special Rapporteur appointed by the Human Rights Council, in her report on 'forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia', has said that the in has been linked to incidents of violence against members of the (SC), Muslim, tribals and Christian communities. She has mentioned that reports have documented the use of by BJP leaders against minority groups, and the rise of vigilantism targeting

Her report also mentioned a letter sent in May 2018 by the Special Rapporteur to the Government of concerning the updating of the Register of Citizens (NRC) in which attention was drawn towards heightened concerns of the Bengali Muslim minority.

The Special Rapporteur mentioned several examples in her report that were drawn from different sources, including submissions received by her in response to the call for input for the present report. Referring to racist, xenophobic violence, hate crimes and hate speech, the report pointed out instances of several countries where politicians in the government have made racist and xenophobic statements.

About India, the report said: "In India, the election of nationalist has been linked to incidents of violence against members of Dalit, Muslim, tribal and Christian communities. Reports document the use of by BJP leaders against minority groups, and the rise of vigilantism targeting Muslims and Dalits" while quoting submission to the universal periodic review of

While talking about institutionalisation of structural and other forms of exclusion, the report mentioned that 'nationalist populist parties' in some places have implemented administrative and other rules leading to the exclusion of minority groups from official citizen registries on the basis of claims that they are irregular migrants, notwithstanding evidence showing that they are entitled to citizenship.

In this context, the report said: "In May 2018, the Special Rapporteur addressed a letter to the concerning the updating of the Register of Citizens, a process governed by local authorities in the state of The letter drew attention to the heightened concerns of the Bengali Muslim minority, who have historically been portrayed as foreigners despite having lived in India for generations, even preceding the colonial era. Since 1997, the has arbitrarily identified a large number of Bengali people as so-called "doubtful or disputed voters", resulting in their further disenfranchisement and the loss of entitlements to social protection as Indian citizens. While many have affirmed that the updating process is generally committed to retaining Indian citizens on the Register of Citizens, concerned parties fear that local authorities in Assam, who are deemed to be particularly hostile towards Muslims and people of Bengali descent, may manipulate the verification system in an attempt to exclude many genuine Indian citizens from the updated Register."

The Special Rapporteur on forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance is an independent human rights expert appointed by the (UNHRC). The Secretary General's Secretariat has sent this report to the for discussion.

The report also mentioned several other countries like Australia, the and where politicians in government have used print and to make racist and xenophobic statements that have included promises to adopt policies targeting specific racial, ethnic and religious groups, even when such policies would violate existing laws.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Wed, September 12 2018. 22:45 IST
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