The Economic Times

Government says seeking details on US funds for NGOs to promote religious freedom in India

"In any case, any such activity in India in this area by anybody has to follow the rules of the land," Raveesh Kumar. MEA spokesperson, said.

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Last Updated: Nov 09, 2017, 08.00 PM IST|Original: Nov 09, 2017, 08.00 PM IST
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Raveesh Kumar was responding to the announcement made by the US State Department that it will extend grant for organisations which can come up with ideas and projects to promote religious freedom in India.
The government today said it has sought details about the US announcement to provide nearly USD 500,000 to NGOs to promote religious freedom in India, and asserted that any such activity in the country by anybody has to follow the rules of the land.

"We have seen reports on this issue. We have sought more details," external affairs ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said.

He was responding to questions on the issue during a weekly media briefing.

"In any case, any such activity in India in this area by anybody has to follow the rules of the land," Kumar said, adding he will be able to comment further after getting details on the issue.

The US today said it wants to "increase societal tolerance" and reduce "religiously- motivated violence" and discrimination in India with the nearly USD 500,000 grant to NGOs in the country.

The State Department had yesterday announced the grant for organisations which can come up with ideas and projects to promote religious freedom in India.

The State Department's Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor, in a notice, had said that it seeks to "reduce religiously-motivated violence and discrimination in India" through its USD 4,93,827 grant programme.

"The goal of the programme is to increase societal tolerance and improve civilian security to reduce religiously- motivated violence and discrimination, and the funds will support activities that work toward that end," a State Department spokesperson told PTI in Washington.

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