14:43 GMT13 April 2021
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    NEW DELHI (Sputnik) - India's External Affairs Ministry promised on Tuesday to take action against a US federal commission after it published a report alleging that the Indian government mistreated religious minorities.

    "Its biased and tendentious comments against India are not new. But on this occasion, its misrepresentation has reached new levels... We regard it as an organization of particular concern and will treat it accordingly", Anurag Shrivastava, a ministerial spokesman, said.

    The US Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF), which bills itself as an independent agency monitoring the right to freedom of religion abroad, has asked Washington to label India as a 'country of particular concern' over a perceived downward trend in religious conditions.

    The Commission has recommended the US government to impose targeted sanctions on Indian government agencies and officials responsible for violations of religious freedom by freezing those individuals’ assets and/ or barring their entry into the United States.

    The USCIRF 2020 Annual Report singled out 14 nations whose governments allegedly engaged in or tolerated "systematic, ongoing, egregious violations". The agency said that India saw a drastic turn downward in 2019 after the reelection of the pro-Hindu BJP party.

    religious issues, United States, India
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