No need to lecture other countries on human rights, says Union Minister RK Singh

Union Minister for Power, New and Renewable Energy RK Singh has condemned the criticism India has received in recent weeks on human rights issues. The minister was speaking at the inaugural ceremony of a two-day conference organized by the National Human Rights Commission and the Indira Gandhi National Arts Center on Thursday.

The conference will bring together members of state human rights commissions, judges, educators, scholars, artists and others discussing human rights concepts in history, philosophy, l art and cultural heritage of India.

Speaking at the event, which was held at Vigyan Bhawan in Delhi on Thursday, the Union Minister spoke about India’s long history of recognition of human rights.

“Let no one come and preach to us. The western world came out with the concept of human rights and they felt they were the first to do it. It was important to know where we come from and what is our course,” Singh said.

Singh also defended the need for strong anti-terrorism laws and said laws like the UAPA are needed to “act against people who behead other people.”

“Laws like UAPA are necessary to protect people. We can break due process for a few terrorists to ensure that a large number of people are not killed,” Singh said.

NHRC Chairman, Justice Arun Mishra was also present at the event. Advocating India’s tolerance, Mishra cited the Vedas, Mahabharata, Kautilya’s arthashastra and Akbar’s Din-e-ilahi to indicate the tradition of equality and tolerance in Indian history and culture. .

“The right to one’s body, home and dignity is there in the Rigveda,” Judge Mishra said, citing the Mahabharata, Manusmriti and other texts to show the rules of war and ceasefire , protection of rights by the ruler, environmental awareness and several other key human rights. concepts discussed in ancient and medieval texts.

“A country with a history and culture like ours can never be considered intolerant,” Mishra said.

“There was a mixture of religions, the influence of Akbar’s Din-e-ilahi who researched the similarities between religions and said that God is one in all religions. I don’t know why there has been an attempt to divide religions now. We need a new Din-e-ilahi to show that all religions are one,” the NHRC chairman said.

The conference is set to continue on Friday with a panel discussion on human rights traditions in literature and art. Union External Affairs Minister S Jaishanker is expected to attend the farewell session.

Angela C. Hale