Penpa Tsering, the president of the Tibetan government in exile, has offered his support at a time when some people want the Joe Biden administration to raise concerns about the human rights situation in India with the visiting Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. He said, “India is the most tolerant country in the world.” Speaking at the Press Club of Australia, he emphasized that while people outside of India could have a different perception of the situation there as a result of certain instances, this is not the case. “We are Indian. My birthplace was India. Modi’s coercive measures are not as severe as they are depicted in the world media to be. He does not want to convert Muslims to Hinduism. Some cow vigilantes overreact to certain events, and the government is criticized for this. One of the world’s most tolerant nations, in my opinion, is India. There are a lot of various faiths, cultures, and types of individuals. Penpa Tsering was questioned about India and the “Hindutva thrust,” according to the Hindustan Times. Troublemakers are around, he added. You cannot hold the whole community responsible for the actions of a few troublemakers. India, in my opinion, is a highly resilient nation that values variety, Penpa Tsering remarked. “Do you see any troublemakers from the Muslim or Hindu side?” It was requested of Penpa Tsering. “Both,” he answered.
Rajeev Chandrasekhar, a member of the Union government, tweeted a recording of his speech along with the statement, “India is the most tolerant country n most diverse country in the world — where every citizen has equal rights.” Regarding the India-China dispute, Tsering remarked, “His Holiness used to comment that India is usually too careful when it comes to China when this subject (on the India-China dynamics change) is posed. Now I can claim we can delete the word “over” while keeping the word “cautious.” China’s aggressive behavior along India’s border has made India far more powerful. As Tibetans who have coexisted with the Chinese for such a long time, if there is one thing we know it is to stand up for our principles. The Chinese will always treat you like a pony and keep riding you if you don’t stand up for your beliefs or stance.
Criticism of human rights
While Prime Minister Modi is on a “official state visit” to the US, over 70 members of the US Senate and House of Representatives have written to the Biden administration urging them to discuss human rights issues. The letter claims that there are alarming indications of a smaller political landscape, a rise in religious intolerance, the targeting of journalists and civil society groups, and tightening limitations on press freedoms and internet access in India.
Although “we do so in a way where we don’t seek to lecture or assert that we don’t have challenges ourselves,” he added, “we make our views known.”