U.S. Commission says religious freedom in India deteriorated in 2018

By Sriram Lakshman | The Hindu

The United States Commission on International Religious Freedom, a bipartisan, independent federal government commission has said that there is an “overall deterioration of religious freedom conditions in 2018” in India, in its 2019 report released earlier this week. India continues to remain a Tier 2 country, according to the Commission, a list it has been unable to get off of since 2009.

Tier 2 countries are those in which “violations engaged in or tolerated by the government during 2018 are serious and characterized by at least one of the elements of the ‘systematic, ongoing, and egregious” CPC (Country of Particular Concern) standard.

CPCs are designated by the State Department and the latest list, from November 2018, contains 10 countries (including Burma, China, Pakistan, Iran and Saudi Arabia). In these countries the government has tolerated or engaged in “particularly severe religious freedom violations, meaning those are systematic, ongoing, and egregious.” Other Tier 2 countries for 2018 are Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Cuba, Egypt, Indonesia, Iraq, Kazakhstan, Laos, Malaysia and Turkey.

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