OIC only does its reputation damage by being consistently manipulated by anti-India forces, says Arindam Bagchi, spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs
NEW DELHI — The large-scale violence during the Ram Navami celebrations has now drawn global attention as the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), the global body of Muslim countries, on Tuesday denounced the anti-Muslim riotings in several states.
The 57-member OIC specifically mentioned the burning of madrasa by “an extremist Hindu mob” in the city of Bihar Sharif in the northern state of Bihar. Its statement referred to the torching of a 110-year-old seminary named Madrasa Azizia where thousands of books including copies of the Holy Quran were burnt down.
“The General Secretariat of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) has followed with deep concern the acts of violence and vandalism targeting Muslim community in several states in India during the Ram Navami processions, including the burning of a madrasa and its library by an extremist Hindu mob in Bihar Sharif on 31 March 2023,” the statement said.
Several states such as Bihar, West Bengal, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Jharkhand, Uttar Pradesh and Telangana witnessed violence during the Ram Navami celebrations. The Hindu rallyists targeted mosques and homes, shops and other properties of Muslims. Hindutva fanatics also delivered hate speeches and hurled abuses at Muslims.
The OIC described the incidents of violence as “a vivid manifestation of mounting Islamophobia and systemic targeting of the Muslim community in India”.
The global body of Muslims denounced such provocative acts of violence and vandalism, which are “a vivid manifestation of mounting Islamophobia and systemic targeting of the Muslim community in India.” It called upon the Indian authorities to take firm action against the instigators and perpetrators of such acts and to ensure the safety, security, rights, and dignity of the Muslim community in the country”.
West Bengal and Bihar chief ministers blamed the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for playing a role in causing riots in these states.
Meanwhile, the External Affairs Ministry of India (MEA) strongly reacted to the OIC statement calling it an “anti-India agenda”.
“We strongly condemn the statement issued by the OIC secretariat today regarding India. This is one more example of their communal mindset and anti-India agenda,” said Arindam Bagchi, MEA spokesperson.
“OIC only does its reputation damage by being consistently manipulated by anti-India forces,” he added.
The country witnessed large-scale violence last year too during Hindu religious festivals. Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Gujarat and Jharkhand were some of the states worst affected by the communal violence then.