Obama says: India needs to cherish its loyal Muslims

New Delhi:  India needs to cherish and nurture its Muslim population that is integrated and considers itself Indian, former US president Barack Obama said here today.

It is an idea that needs to be reinforced, the former president said at the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit.

Obama said he had emphasised the need for religious tolerance and the right to practice one’s own faith during closed door talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his last trip to India in 2015.

The 44th US president, who held office between 2009 and 2017, had made similar comments during a public interaction on the last day of his visit, which had come against the backdrop of controversy over religious conversions.

“There’s a counter narrative taking place, at all times, but it’s particularly pronounced now… in Europe, US and sometimes in India where those old tribal impulses reassert themselves under leaders who try to push back and under leaders who try to exploit them,” Obama said.

Responding to an India-specific question, Obama referred to India’s “enormous Muslim population”, which is successful, integrated and thinks of itself as Indian.

That is unfortunately not always the case in some other countries, Obama added.

Referring to India, he said, “And that is something that needs to be cherished and nurtured, cultivated. It’s important to continue reinforcing it.”

Answering a question on terrorism emanating from Pakistan, Obama said, “We had no evidence that Pakistan was aware of Osama bin Laden’s presence there but that is something obviously we looked at.

NEWSNET ONE

2 Responses to Obama says: India needs to cherish its loyal Muslims

  1. India is a secular country and we Indians must respect this. Funny how religion has destroyed this generation’s minds too. Obama is a loyal friend of India and we respect his advice. But I wish he said, “India needs to cherish its loyal people” because that’d have been better. Also, people have the habit of bringing religion in everything. So yeah here they got a point, to bring this Hindu Muslim thing again!

  2. yashswini Tiwary

    Particularly in a country like India where you have such an enormous Muslim population that is successful, integrated and thinks of itself as Indian. I think that is something that should be cherished, nurtured and cultivated.

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