A senior US official told lawmakers that India remains the world’s largest democracy with a strong public order system, but some measures taken by the Indian government, including restrictions on free speech, have sparked concerns contrary to its democratic values. . Dean Thompson, Acting Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia, made the remarks during a hearing on democracy in the Indo-Pacific on Wednesday of the Foreign Affairs Subcommittee of the Room on Asia and Central Asia.
Thompson said, “India is the largest democracy in the world with a strong legal system and an independent judiciary, and it has a strong and growing strategic partnership with the United States. However, some of the actions taken by the Indian government have raised concerns that run counter to its democratic values. “This includes increasing restrictions on freedom of expression and the detention of human rights activists and journalists,” he said. He said the United States regularly talks about these issues.
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“The institutions are there to protect the rights”
However, India has rejected criticism from foreign governments and human rights groups that civil liberties have been eroded in the country. India said it has well-established democratic processes and strong institutions to protect the rights of all. The Government of India has emphasized that our Constitution provides adequate protection under several laws for the protection of human rights.
Responding to a question from lawmakers, Thompson said the United States was concerned about some restrictions on journalists in Pakistan and Bangladesh.
Congresswoman Chrissy Hollahan raised the issue of Kashmir during the congressional hearing. To this, Thompson said: “Kashmir is an area where we have asked them to restore normalcy as soon as possible and we have also seen measures being taken like the release of prisoners, the restoration of the 4G network.” We want them to take electoral action as well and we have inspired them to do so and will continue to do so.