The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Opinion India could make a tragic turn toward a Hindu theocracy

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi speaks at an election campaign rally in Hyderabad in April. (Mahesh Kumar A./AP)

Mili Mitra’s Aug. 8 op-ed, “A dark moment for India, ” should ring alarm bells for all Americans, especially the Indian Americans who have worked hard and supported the rise of a prosperous, democratic and secular India for the past seven decades.

Recent undemocratic actions by the Modi government in Kashmir not only pose a threat to the regional peace and stability, but they also could disrupt India’s long march to improve the lives of about 1.3 billion Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs, Christians, Buddhists and others living in peace and harmony.

Since the reelection of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in May, extreme violence and lynchings of Muslims and low-caste Dalits by Hindu extremists have been on the rise. It would be a tragic mistake to allow Mr. Modi to steer the world’s largest democracy from a secular country into a Hindu theocracy.

Islam A. Siddiqui, Arlington

The writer is a former undersecretary of agriculture and chief agricultural negotiator for the U.S. trade representative.

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