Row in British parliament complex over Narendra Modi’s past

'The human rights issues are very serious and are not going to go away, no matter what happens in elections'

London | Updated: February 28, 2014 8:08 am
British parliament complex British parliament complex

A debate on BJP prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi’s controversial past sparked a row at a meeting within Britain’s parliament complex.

Human rights groups and organisers of ‘Narendra Modi and the Rise of Hindu Fascism’ at a committee room in Parliament building on Wednesday claimed they had been subjected to intense pressure and death threats from Hindu right-wing groups in the UK to cancel the debate.

“This meeting has been held under extremely difficult conditions, in the face of death threats. It just highlights the inability of Narendra Modi’s supporters to tolerate anything other than their narrative and attempts to suppress free speech,” said Chetan Bhatt, director of the Centre for the Study of Human Rights at the London School of Economics (LSE).

At the meeting, Bhatt traced Modi’s RSS roots leading up to his role as chief minister of Gujarat during the 2002 riots.

“The human rights issues are very serious and are not going to go away, no matter what happens in elections,” he said.

Members of the Hindu Forum of Britain and other UK-based Hindu groups present at the event expressed discontent with the proceedings and claimed Modi was being unfairly accused and attacked.

The meeting received the backing of a number of British parliamentarians, led by Labour MP John McDonnell, as well as celebrated India-born British artist Anish Kapoor. “We are in a moment of great danger and your call to our sense of justice is much needed,” Kapoor said in a message read out at the event.

The event also marked the launch of ‘Narendra Modi Exposed: Challenging the Myths Surrounding the BJP’s Prime Ministerial Candidate’, a report published by the Awaaz Network and The Monitoring Group.

The report’s author, LSE Emeritus Professor Gautam Appa noted that the BJP’s claim of the so-called “clean chit” to Modi by the Supreme Court is a misconception as the judicial process is still on in India. Suresh Grover, co-author of the report, told The Indian Express in an email that another Labour MP Virendra Sharma (representing Ealing Southall) who had originally agreed to host the meeting “withdrew after pressure from supporters of Modi”.

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  1. D
    Mar 1, 2014 at 3:05 am
    Shinde is right. Many media houses deserve to be shut downand their owners arrested. So shameless they are, the way they suck up toCongress. ..........Look at this story! Headline...ROW IN BRITISHPARLIAMENT....added word complex................and who have objection toNarendra Modi? ....A few Congress stooges in UK like Chetan Bhatt, AnishKapoor and Anish Appa!.............................What do these jokers have todo with British Parliament?....................Shameless Indian Express.Shekhar Gupta is throughly discredited after getting exposed and ironically, isstill not just continuing but prospering with Indian Express....a paper thatwas an insution before Shekhar took over and sold it!
  2. S
    Feb 28, 2014 at 12:45 am
    Narendra Modi is pure, we know that. Modi does not need any certificate to prove his worth. He is our proud and and it is largely known in India that his retion has constantly been maligned by the politicians of congress and some sections of media also supported that cause of defamation. so it is all CONgressi and pseudoseculars who are crumbling because they know very well that Modi will be the next prime minister of India.
  3. S
    Shiva Bhat
    May 5, 2014 at 12:54 pm
    Britian is supporting the Christian missionary NGO's - its aim is to ensure a weak India by keeping Congress in power while further exploiting India & ensuring the end of Hindus. A weak, poor, corrupt, vulnerable India is what the West wants as usual.. Cameron ought to sort his own backyard first with the Rise of Islamic fascism in UK