Ilhan Omar Slams Biden For Failure To Condemn Persecution Of Muslims In India
US Congresswoman Ilhan Omar slammed Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Hindu extremist government as she questioned Wendy Sherman, President Joe Biden’s deputy secretary of state, as to why the United States does not take a strong outward stance against Modi’s attacks on Indian Muslims. Omar voiced her criticisms during a House Foreign Services Committee hearing on restoring American leadership in the Indo-Pacific region.
“One of the things I think [was] a profound moral and strategic mistake in the last Cold War was our support for brutal dictators in the name of having a common enemy… What worries me is that this time, we seem willing to let Modi be our new Pinochet,” Omar said.
“How are we promoting a free and open region by supporting Modi? Why has the Biden administration been so reluctant to criticize Modi’s government on human rights? How much does the Modi administration have to criminalize the act of being Muslim in India for us to say something? What will it take for us to outwardly criticize the action that the Modi administration is taking against its Muslim minorities?” she added.
Omar also implied that India was gearing up for a genocide against Muslims, saying, “When we remain silent, and the situation gets out of control in the way that it did with the Rohingyas, we all of a sudden show our interest in a genocide that’s taking place. But we have an opportunity now to lead and make sure there is a deterrence in the actions that they are taking as our partners.”
Journalists Slam Attack On Reporters At Hindu Extremist Event
Senior journalists across multiple media platforms gathered to condemn the April 3 Hindu extremist hate speech event, also called Hindu Mahapanchayat, which featured hate speeches from Hindu supremacists Yati Narsinghanand and Suresh Chavhanke. The journalists also condemned other attacks on press freedoms made by the Modi government.
Jaishankar Gupta, senior journalist and member of the Press Council of India, stated that journalists must “react to events” and take a stance against atrocities committed against media persons: “Our silence will kill our journalism… It’s [a trying] time for us, but the only option that we have is to report these hate assemblies and how local police officials allowed such hate assemblies.”
Hartosh Singh Bal, Political Editor at The Caravan Magazine, recounted the way journalists covering the Hindu Mahapanchayat were attacked by Hindu supremacists.
“A woman journalist was harassed and molested while the Muslim journalist was beaten up ruthlessly… Please remember that our identities are more important than our work in the current regime. The Centre does not want a media critical of its programmes and actions,” he said.
“Muslims are being singled out. We must tie this with what is happening in Karnataka – [it] is not about religion alone but denying access to education. When they attack a Muslim journalist, they make it clear that they do not want Muslims to be a journalist or for that matter does not want them to work.”
He added that this was not the first time the Delhi police had allowed for hatred to fester, saying, “Amid all this, the recurring approach of Delhi Police continues… It is the same Delhi Police which abetted BJP leaders who went on rampage during Delhi  riots. It is the same Delhi Police which takes note of assault without explaining how such a hate assembly continued for hours, even when it denied permission for the event.”
Hindu Extremists Harass Muslim Fruit Sellers, Force 72-Year-Old Muslim Woman To Shut Shop Near Temple
The Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) discriminatory law banning Muslims from setting up shop around Hindu temples has forced Noor Jahan, a 72-year-old Muslim woman, to shut down her shop, which was located at the historic Chennakeshava temple in Karnataka state.
Since being evicted by temple authorities, Noor Jahan and her family have lost their only source of income. The shop had been providing for their family for 50 years, selling toys, bangles, idols, and other items.
“We have been paying a monthly rent of ₹7,351 to the temple administration. As per the contract agreement, we still have one year to either terminate or renew the agreement,” Noor Jahan said.
The temple authorities justified the eviction, saying that they were following the order put in place by the Hindu supremacist government.
Meanwhile, the Hindu extremist group Sri Rama Sene has begun targeting Muslim mango sellers, claiming that Muslims have a monopoly over the market.
“Mango markets are controlled by Muslim traders and it is high time poor Hindu mango growers and traders take over. This will also ensure Hindu mango growers prosper… Hindu youngsters should get involved in market-related activities and Muslims cannot be dictating prices,” claimed Siddalinga Swami, honorary president of the extremist group.
Opposition leaders have slammed Hindu extremists and their allies among the BJP for their multiple campaigns targeting Muslims economically. Former Karnataka chief minister H.D. Kumaraswamy stated that it was “anti-national” to boycott Muslim mango sellers.
“For hundreds of years, we have all eaten fruits and other food they (Muslims) sold. Why do such issues come up only around elections? Only to get votes?” he said.