New Delhi: India Monday reminded its nationals based in the UAE about the “values of non-discrimination” in the wake of some tweets targeting Muslims over the congregation of Tablighi Jamaat in New Delhi.
“India and UAE share the value of non-discrimination on any grounds. Discrimination is against our moral fabric and the rule of law. Indian nationals in the UAE should always remember this,” Pavan Kapoor, Ambassador of India to the UAE, said in a tweet Monday.
India and UAE share the value of non-discrimination on any grounds. Discrimination is against our moral fabric and the Rule of law. Indian nationals in the UAE should always remember this. https://t.co/8Ui6L9EKpc
— Amb Pavan Kapoor (@AmbKapoor) April 20, 2020
This comes a few days after Indian national Saurabh Upadhyay, based in the UAE, put out a series of anti-Muslim posts, inviting the wrath of Princess Hend Al Qassimi, a member of the royal family of United Arab Emirates, who warned that such tweets “will not go unnoticed”.
Last week, Upadhyay, who has now deleted his Twitter account, allegedly used abusive language against the Tablighi Jamaat, calling them “radical Islamist terrorists”.
Upadhyay later went on to say how Hindus were being targeted in the Middle East and that the region is what it is today “because Indians have built cities like Dubai from scratch”.
Kuwaiti lawyer wants action against Tejasvi
Kapoor’s tweet also comes a day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that Covid-19 pandemic “does not see race, religion, colour, caste, creed, language or border before striking”.
“Our response and conduct thereafter should attach primacy to unity and brotherhood. We are in this together,” he added.
Meanwhile, BJP MP Tejasvi Surya found himself in a similar situation to Upadhyay’s after his five-year-old tweet went viral Sunday — leading to several Saudi Twitter users demanding action against him.
In his tweet, the BJP MP had written: “95% Arab women have never had an orgasm in the last few hundred years! Every mother has produced kids as act of sex and not love:@TarekFatah.”
Mejbel Al Sharika, a Kuwaiti lawyer and director of International Human Rights, tagged PM Modi and demanded “punitive action” for Tejasvi’s “disgraceful comment”.
“Dear @Twitter, this Indian politicians @Tejasvi_Surya has racially slurred Arab women, I wonder how is his account still active? Is it not against Twitter’s official policy? Please act as Arab sentiment has been badly wounded,” he wrote in another tweet.
@PMOIndia Respected Prime minister @narendramodi India's relation with the Arab world has been that of mutual respect. Do you allow your parliamentarian to publicly humiliate our women? We expect your urgent punitive action against @Tejasvi_Surya for his disgraceful comment. pic.twitter.com/emymJrc5aU
— المحامي⚖مجبل الشريكة (@MJALSHRIKA) April 19, 2020
‘Stop growing tide of Islamophobia’
The Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), meanwhile, called out India and urged the government to “stop the growing tide of Islamophobia in India”.
“[We] urge the Indian Govt to take urgent steps to stop the growing tide of Islamophobia in India and protect the rights of its persecuted Muslim minority as per its obligations under international Human Rights law,” said a tweet by the body’s Independent Permanent Human Rights Commission Sunday.
1/2 #OIC-IPHRC condemns the unrelenting vicious #Islamophobic campaign in #India maligning Muslims for spread of #COVID-19 as well as their negative profiling in media subjecting them to discrimination & violence with impunity.
— OIC-IPHRC (@OIC_IPHRC) April 19, 2020
This comes despite the fact that the Modi government has taken several efforts to build a special relationship with the Arab world.
Former External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj had even attended an OIC meet in March last year despite the group’s closeness with Pakistan.