IMC-USA urges State Department to deny visa to pogrom politician Narendra Modi

July 08, 2008

Indian Muslim Council-USA (IMC-USA), an advocacy group dedicated to safeguarding India ’s pluralist and tolerant ethos, has urged the State Department to refuse US visa to Narendra Modi, Chief Minister of the State of Gujarat, India on the grounds of his continued subversion of state apparatus against securing justice to the victims of 2002 pogroms and institutional violations of religious freedom of the minorities in his state.

IMC has learned that Narendra Modi is actively trying to obtain an US visa in order to rehabilitate his image as a pogrom politician and clear the grounds for moving into the national politics in India. IMC-USA, one of the founding organizations of the Coalition Against Genocide (CAG) campaign that successfully lobbied to prevent Modi from getting an US visa in 2005, is reviving the campaign to ensure that Narendra Modi is not allowed to enter the United States.

In a letter addressed to the Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice, Rasheed Ahmed, President of IMC-USA detailed the institutionalized nature of the violations of the religious freedoms in the State of Gujarat including the subversion of justice to the victims of 2002 pogroms, marginalization by means of economic and social boycott and a ‘freedom of religion’ act which effectively curtails religious freedom by requiring to register and get approval of state officials before believing in a different faith.

The letter further stressed: “Refusing the visa to an egregious violator of religious freedoms such as Modi sends a clear message to all the Hindu nationalists who openly espouse a future India where religious minorities would at the best be second class citizens, that such actions will have consequences and they will be considered persona non grata by much of the civilized world.”

Indian Muslim Council-USA is the largest advocacy organization of Indian Muslims in the United States with 10 chapters across the nation.

CONTACT:
Zeeshan Farees
phone/fax: 1-800-839-7270
email: info@imc-usa.org

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