Former Supreme Court judge, Justice Markandey Katju, has ripped apart the stand taken by the Indian government at the United Nations Human Rights Council that India was a secular country with no state religion.
Taking to Facebook, Justice Katju, a proponent of communal harmony, wrote, “At the U.N. Human Rights Council India claimed it was a secular state with no state religion, and no discrimination on the basis of religion, etc.
“That should also be told to the relatives of Ikhlaque, Pehlu Khan, and a host of others, including the Muslims attacked in Muzaffarnagar, Ballabhgarh, etc and the victims of ‘gau rakshaks’, as well as the Christians of Delhi whose churches were vandalized, and who were attacked in Odisha, etc. It should also be told to Muslims who are denied jobs, houses on rent, etc only because they are Muslims.”
Justice Katju concluded that it’s ‘not what is written in the Constitution which matters, it is what is practised in society which is relevant.’
Speaking at the 27th session of the Universal Periodic Review Working Group at the UNHCR here, Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi said that the Indian Constitution enshrined various provisions for the protection of the rights and interest of the minorities.
His comments came in sharp contrast with the repeated rhetoric of the ruling BJP leaders that India was a Hindu nation and views of the majority ought to have prevailed. This stand has led to giving legitimacy of series of murders of innocent Muslims by Hindutva terrorists posing themselves as cow protectors.
Rohatgi, who led the Indian delegation at the UN Human Rights Council, said India maked no distinction between caste, creed, colour or religion of a citizen.
“India is a secular state with no state religion,” he said, adding that the Indian constitution guarantees freedom of religion to every individual.
He said the right to free speech and expression occupies its rightful place in the core of the Indian Constitution.