India should be placed on religious freedom blacklist, US panel says

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A US government panel has called for India to be put on a religious freedom blacklist over a “drastic” downturn under the prime minister, Narendra Modi, triggering a sharp response from New Delhi.

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The US commission on international religious freedom recommends but does not set policy, and there is virtually no chance the state department will follow its lead on India, an increasingly close US ally.

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In an annual report, the bipartisan panel said that India should join the ranks of “countries of particular concern” that would be subject to sanctions if they do not improve their records.

“In 2019, religious freedom conditions in India experienced a drastic turn downward, with religious minorities under increasing assault,” the report said.

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