Taking a strong exception to the comments by the U.S. State Department on handling of peaceful protests, India on Friday termed the remarks as “needless” and said freedoms of speech and expression, as well as, of peaceful assembly are enshrined in the Constitution.
“We have seen the needless comments by the U.S. State Department Spokesperson on handling of peaceful protests in India. Freedoms of speech and expression, as well as, of peaceful assembly, are enshrined in the Constitution of India and exercised by citizens of this country of 1.2 billion people,” official spokesperson in the Ministry of External Affairs said in New Delhi.
During a daily briefing, U.S. State Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland said “as you know, we support the right of peaceful, non-violent protest around the world. That said, India is a democracy and we count on India to exercise appropriate democratic restraint in the way it deals with peaceful protest.”
She was asked about the “demonstration going on in India and police brutality against the people who are having peaceful demonstrations against corruption” with a special emphasis on protest against corruption to be held on August 16, led by social activist Anna Hazare.
Keywords: Lokpal issue, Hazare fast, State Department comment, Ministry of External Affairs. Hindu