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India: Orissa

Volume 705: debated on Wednesday 19 November 2008

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Whether they have or will discuss with the Government of India allegations that certain Hindu organisations are seeking the religious cleansing of those following other faiths in Orissa state. [HL5765]

We believe that there are a variety of factors behind the recent violence in Orissa. On 17 October, my noble friend Lord Malloch-Brown discussed our concerns with Anand Sharma, Indian Minister of External Affairs, and Mohammed Quereshi, chairman of the Minorities Commission, in New Delhi.

We will continue to urge the Government of India to uphold the right to freedom of religion. The issue of religious freedom is due to be raised at the EU-India Human Rights Dialogue in New Delhi later this year.