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Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Modi vows to uphold freedom of faith, stand against hatred

February 17, 2015 | published at http://MikeGhouseforIndia.blogspot.com

I am encouraged by the step taken by PM Modi and pray that he believes in it and implements it with justice and equal opportunity to every Indian. 

On January 16, 2015 I wrote,

Mr. Modi, you surprised the nation with your inclusionary statements made on November 1, 2014.  As a Pluralist, I whole heartedly welcomed your statements and congratulated you for taking that step. You said, “The BJP should be like a bouquet so that every Indian felt there was a flower in it that he or she could identify with. “And, “A poor and illiterate person living in a slum should think, ‘Yes, there is a flower for me in this bouquet’. That is the only way he can make his voice heard.”

Mr. Prime Minister, I admire you for saying that, even though I am not your Chamcha (sycophant) blindly praising or even worshiping you, I am pleased to take a critical approach towards your policies with the intent of preventing you from falling from grace.  I will keep you on your toes.

Since you made that statement, a few rogue elements  are hell bent on throwing your bouquet into gutter; your legacy is on the line.  You can go down as the greatest Prime Minister of India or finish your term as a another promiser and talker, the choice is clearly yours, indeed, you alone are the driver of your legacy.

We hope you have not given the explicit permission to anyone to destroy India’s social fabric that includes but not limited to pushing, accusing, and maligning India’s fellow Citizens who are not Hindu. But your silence is really bothering us all, yes all of us Indians. We need clarification today, did you permit anyone to do what they are doing on your watch? 
I asked him to announce this:

2. Declare that India is God’s own country, and is represented by every race, nationality, ethnicity, language, culture and religion. We see God as one, none and many; and in every form; male, female, genderless and non-existent, being and non-being, nameless and with innumerable names, and as Indians, we should not be biased towards any one. Aspire for an India that the world can emulate; a pluralistic democracy where every one can eat, drink, wear or believe whatever he or she wants to in her pursuit of happiness.

3. Announce that from this day forward, every Indian will have equal access to education, employment, housing, business loans, entrepreneurial opportunities and if anyone is denied that opportunity, you will step up and stand up against the violators.

Full article at: http://mikeghouseforindia.blogspot.com/2015/01/republic-day-message-to-modi-and-obama.html
Mike Ghouse for India
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Please read the note now:

Modi vows to uphold freedom of faith, stand against hatred

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  •  | 
  • Updated: Feb 18, 2015 01:01 IST

Prime Minister Narendra Modi receives a memento by Cardinal George Alencherry during a function to celebrate the elevation to sainthood of Kuriakose Elias Chavara and Mother Euphrasia as Union finance minister Arun Jaitley looks on, in New Delhi. (PTI Photo)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi pledged on Tuesday to uphold freedom of faith and crack down on inciters of sectarian tensions, his first unequivocal condemnation of religious violence after a series of attacks on Christian properties in Delhi.
In his clearest commitment to secularism yet, the Prime Minister told church leaders every citizen had the right to follow any faith without coercion and vowed to protect all religious groups in India.
“My government will ensure that there is complete freedom of faith and that everyone has the undeniable right to retain or adopt the religion of his or her choice without coercion or undue influence,” Modi said  at a national ceremony of the Syro-Malabar Church to celebrate the canonisation of Saints Kuriakose Elias Chavara and Mother Euphrasia.
“My government will not allow any religious group, belonging to the majority or the minority, to incite hatred against others, overtly or covertly.”
The Prime Minister had been silent so far on religious tensions in India despite mounting criticism over growing intolerance of Hindu hardliners and the recent Delhi attacks that fuelled concerns religious minorities were being increasingly targeted after the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) came to power.
Modi rarely attends events organised by minority communities and his decision to speak at the conference was seen as an attempt to reassure the Christian community after the BJP’s bruising defeat in the recent Delhi election.
His comments were also seen as a condemnation of a recent spate of forced religious conversions by hardline Hindu groups across the country, an issue he had refused to comment on despite pressure from the Opposition in Parliament.
Reading in English from a prepared speech aimed as much at a global audience as those at home, Modi endorsed pluralism, calling “equal respect” for all faiths, an ancient Indian value that was also integral to the Constitution.
“This principle of equal respect and treatment for all faiths has been a part of India`s ethos for thousands of years. And that is how it became integral to the Constitution of India. Our Constitution did not evolve in a vacuum. It has roots in the ancient cultural traditions of India.”
Last week, hundreds of Christians protested the attacks on churches in the Capital, saying they saw a “deliberate” pattern of targeting the community.
Church leaders said on Tuesday they were reassured by Modi’s speech but would look forward to its implementation. “It was joyous thing to hear the Prime Minister give these assurances. We have to wait and verify its outcome,” Father Jacob Barnabas, the apostolic in-charge of the Syro-Malabar Church organisation outside Kerala, told HT.
Modi’s comments came after US President Barack Obama called for religious tolerance in a speech wrapping up his recent visit, saying India would not succeed if it was splintered along religious lines.
Reacting to Modi’s speech, the Congress said it was “better late than never” on the prime minister’s part. “However, the proof of the pudding lies in stopping the vitriolic agenda of the RSS and its fringe elements,” party spokesman Randeep Singh Surjewala said.

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