To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what assessment he has made of the effect of the recent closure of Amnesty International’s offices in India on human rights and religious freedoms in that country.
1 February 2021
The freedom of civil society organisations to operate underpins any functioning democracy - in the UK, in India, or anywhere else. We have underlined the importance of organisations like Amnesty International with our contacts in the Government of India. The Minister of State for South Asia and Minister responsible for Human Rights, Lord (Tariq) Ahmad of Wimbledon, discussed Amnesty's case with the Indian High Commissioner in December. Officials remain in close contact with Amnesty on this matter. In respect of religious freedoms, our High Commission in New Delhi regularly meets minority representatives and runs projects promoting minority rights. Over the last three years, we have worked with local NGOs to bring together people of diverse faiths on social action projects that promote inter-faith tolerance.