NEW DELHI: India is dealing with a significant diplomatic row with Muslim international locations after high officers from the nation’s ruling celebration made insulting remarks in regards to the Prophet Muhammad, with consultants saying on Monday the fallout may injury the South Asian nation’s relations with its Islamic nations.
Nupur Sharma and Naveen Jindal, outstanding spokespersons from Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Occasion, made derogatory references to Islam and the Prophet Muhammad on completely different events, sparking anger amongst Muslims in India and abroad.
The BJP suspended Sharma and expelled Jindal on Sunday, following a refrain of diplomatic outrage from Islamic international locations and establishments, together with Saudi Arabia, Qatar and the Group of Islamic Cooperation, as ire poured out on social media, and requires a boycott of Indian items surfaced.
The controversial remarks comply with rising violence focusing on India’s Muslim minority, which makes up about 13 % of its 1.35 billion inhabitants, carried out by Hindu nationalists, who’ve been emboldened by Modi’s common silence about such assaults since taking workplace in 2014.
As criticisms from Muslim international locations mounted over the weekend, consultants mentioned India’s worldwide standing, particularly within the Gulf, is in jeopardy.
“The federal government of India ought to have seen what was coming and may have proactively stopped all these hate propaganda, politics and actions. Sadly, the ruling celebration was selling it,” Sudheendra Kulkarni, political activist and former advisor to the previous BJP Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee, instructed Arab Information.
“It’s not the BJP however the nation that can bear the price of anti-Muslim politics.”
India’s overseas coverage below Modi has prioritized relations with Arab nations and the shut ties it enjoys maintain significance for the South Asian nation, together with for oil imports and the remittances it receives from Gulf states, as round 4 million Indian nationals work within the area, sending over $80 billion yearly.
“For all these causes, India can not afford to have an Arab world which is offended with India,” overseas coverage professional Manoj Joshi, who’s connected with the Delhi-based assume tank Observer Analysis Basis, instructed Arab Information.
India’s relations with the Arab world are passing by “a golden part,” mentioned Meena Singh Roy, who heads the West & Central Asia Middle at Tilottama Basis.
“We should always not do something to derail it,” she instructed Arab Information.
Sanjay Kapoor, chief editor of the political journal Exhausting Information, urged motion by the nation’s management.
“India’s picture has been damage badly and that is one thing that can’t be mounted by diplomacy, however corrective motion by political management in India,” Kapoor instructed Arab Information.
The Indian authorities has but to touch upon the protests lodged by Arab nations, however the Ministry of Exterior Affairs mentioned on Monday that the OIC’s assertion on the matter was “unwarranted” and “narrow-minded,” whereas India’s embassies in Qatar and Doha issued statements that the views expressed in regards to the Prophet Muhammad and Islam didn’t mirror these of New Delhi.
The BJP mentioned the remarks “weren’t in alignment with the ideology the BJP represents.”
Spokesperson Sudesh Verma instructed Arab Information: “The BJP doesn’t imagine in disrespecting reverential figures of any faith.”
Because the remedy of Muslim minorities within the nation has been a “matter of nice concern for the individuals,” India’s former overseas minister, Yashwant Sinha, mentioned the most recent controversy might pave the way in which for change.
“The overwhelming majority of the individuals don’t approve of this and now that there’s a backlash overseas these individuals will grow to be extra cautious,” Sinha instructed Arab Information.
Rahul Gandhi, chief of India’s important opposition Congress Occasion, mentioned on Twitter that the ruling celebration’s actions are weakening the nation on the world stage.
“BJP’s shameful bigotry has not solely remoted us, but in addition broken India’s standing globally,” Ghandhi mentioned.