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India: Religious Freedom

Question for Foreign and Commonwealth Office

UIN HL6283, tabled on 13 March 2018

To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of (1) reported restrictions on the ability to celebrate Christian holidays in India, and (2) the diminution of religious freedom in India; and what representations they have made to the government of India on those matters.

Answered on

26 March 2018

India has a strong democratic framework, which guarantees human rights within its constitution. However, it also faces numerous challenges relating to its size, social and economic development.

The British Government remains committed to promoting and defending freedom of religion or belief (FoRB) for Christians, and indeed individuals of all faiths or beliefs, and to support this we engage with the Indian government to build capacity and share expertise to tackle challenges, including the promotion and protection of human rights. Our High Commission in New Delhi, our network of Deputy High Commissions, as well as Foreign and Commonwealth Office officials in London, maintain a continuous assessment of the human rights situation across India, including with civil society groups in India. Officials regularly meet with minority representatives to discuss minority issues and freedom of religious belief. More widely our project work has benefited a variety of minority groups in India, including promoting minority rights.