NEW DELHI: US President Barack Obama's recent remarks on 'religious intolerance' in India has irked the Hindu right in the country. Criticizing his latest remark — that "acts of intolerance" experienced by religious faiths of all types in India in the past few years would have shocked Mahatma Gandhi —Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) on Friday called Obama a "stooge of the Church" and asked the Narendra Modi government to identify and weed out people in the Indian political class suspected to be batting for the Church.
VHP joint general secretary Surendra Jain said that Obama should instead take care of his country which was witnessing "atrocities" against blacks. "He (Obama) is himself black. Despite that, he has not been able to stop the atrocities being committed on blacks," he said.
Alleging the influence of Christian missionaries on Obama, Jain said, "Obama seems to like his natural allies more than his friend. He made such statements in India and abroad after meeting certain people here on his visit. It is well known that Church plants people in politics. Obama has not been a good guest."
VHP also agreed with Hindu Mahasabha, which is preparing to forcibly marry off couples seen together on Valentine's Day. According to VHP, cases such as the Nirbhaya gang rape happen because couples openly express love on Valentine's Day. Jain said, "There should be no violence (on February 14), but those who love each other must get married. In the name of love, do not indulge in naked display of lust. It is because of these celebrations that incidents like (Delhi gang rape) happen."
On its right to be the moral police, Jain retorted, "What right did Mahatma Gandhi have to steer the freedom struggle? When police do not take action, society will have to."
On Obama's comments, Jain said the US is only worried about Christians and never talked about atrocities on Hindus in Bangladesh. "Obama should have rather asked Christian missionaries to stop conversion. It is because of their antics that there is communal disharmony in India. We ask the government to identify and weed out such people in politics who are planted by the Church," Jain said even as he brushed aside recent attacks on churches in Delhi as a "law and order problem".
"Even temples get vandalized, but do we say Christians have done it? Christians are protesting for political mileage and finance," said Jain.