Alert: India – Write to UN to protect Muslim rights in India

No CAA, Grafitti at Shaheen Bagh protests, New Delhi, 8 January 2020, (c) DiplomatTesterMan CC4

IHRC calls upon all campaigners to write to Ahmed Shaheed, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief to urge the Indian government to stop the state-sanctioned violence and persecution against Muslims.

Background 

Requested Action

Model letter

Recipient Addresses

Background

India has been gripped by anti-Muslim violence following the passing of the Citizenship Amendment Act. The new Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) passed at the end of 2019, has made religion as the primary criteria for acquiring Indian citizenship. The Act assures refuge to persecuted religious minorities, except Muslims, from the neighbouring countries of Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Bangladesh. This Act, read in conjunction with the National Register of Citizens (NRC) and the National population Register (NPR) is discriminatory and dangerous. It is inevitable that the discriminatory policies adopted by the Indian government would lead to further escalation of the religious tension in India.

In July 2019, the Indian Home Minister, Amit Shah, told the parliament that the “government will identify illegal immigrants living on every inch of country’s soil and deport them,” signalling the expansion of the NRC to the rest of India. During the 2019 general elections, the BJP claimed that “illegal immigrants”, or “termites” from Muslim majority Bangladesh have sneaked in and are living off the resources of Indian citizens. (Background courtesy Zulqarnain Banday from The Long View, Volume 2, issue 2, forthcoming). To find out more about the India campaign, please visit our campaign page here.

IHRC is asking campaigners to join this campaign demanding equal citizenship for all Indians regardless of religion or other factors.

Requested Action

IHRC calls upon all campaigners to write to Ahmed Shaheed, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief to urge the Indian government to stop the state-sanctioned violence and persecution against Muslims.

Model letter

Dear Dr Ahmed Shaheed,

I am deeply concerned about the situation of Muslims in India. Modi’s government is currently presiding over a series of laws and policies that systematically targets Muslims, minorities and political dissidents across the country.

I am writing to you to investigate the Indian government’s persecution against Muslims and the devastating effects of the Citizenship Amendment Act and related policies immediately on the Muslim s minority.

The recent actions of the BJP government are amounting to genocide against Muslims where Muslims now live with the fear of losing their rights, livelihoods and access to resources.

The world must act now to put an end to these heinous acts of crime and terror.

[insert your name]

Recipient Addresses

Please write to Ahmed Shaheed, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief at:

freedomofreligion@ohchr.org