On January 12, Dr. Gregory Stanton, founder of Genocide Watch, warned that genocide against Indian Muslims is imminent and will likely unfold if nothing is done. Dr. Stanton also predicted the Rwandan genocide more than two decades ago.
Dr. Stranton announced his prediction during the congressional briefing hosted by the Indian American Muslims Council and Amnesty International. He explained that early signs and processes are already happening.
Gregory Stanton, President of Genocide Watch, speaks about #HaridwarGenocidalMeet.
He mentions the lack of strict legal action from the GoI.
He concludes with how he had predicted the genocide in Rwanda with the full awareness of its leader, and similar is happening in India. pic.twitter.com/vtxBnM8arJ
— Hussain Haidry (@hussainhaidry) January 15, 2022
Dr. Stranton began by highlighting the current Prime Minister's inaction during the 2002 riots in Gujarat. "Genocide Watch has been speaking out warning of genocide in India since 2002," Dr. Stranton said, referring to the violence that killed more than 1,000 Indian Muslims. "At that time, the Chief Minister of Gujarat was Narendra Modi… and he did nothing," he added.
According to Dr. Stranton, there was also evidence that Modi encouraged the massacres in Gujarat. He also said that Modi uses Islamophobic rhetorics to build his political base and cited discriminatory policies.
In 2019, India revoked the autonomous status of Kashmir and enacted the Citizenship Amendment Act, which granted an easier citizenship path for religious minorities from neighboring countries, excluding Muslims. India's Congress party called it a "political strategy to polarize India."
Dr. Stranton compared the Citizenship (Amendment) Act to what the "Myanmar government did to the Rohingya Muslims in 2017." "It is specifically aimed at the destruction, in whole or in part, of a national, ethnic, racial, or religious group, and that is exactly what the Myanmar government did," he added.
Aakar Patel, former head of Amnesty International in India, said the threat of genocide in India should be taken "very seriously." "The record of India's civic violence shows either the state does something that provokes the violence (against Muslims) or does not do enough to stop it," Patel added.
Since taking power in 2014, the ruling BJP (Bharatiya Janata Party) has become highly unresponsive towards anti-Muslim sentiments. Last year, Hindu religious leaders in Haridwar, Uttarakhand, openly called for violence against Muslims. Earlier this year, Muslim women were auctioned off on social media as "for sale as maids."
Syed Zafar, a BJP spokesperson, called Dr. Stranton's claims "factually incorrect." Zafar also claimed that the violence and harassment against Muslims were "factually incorrect."
"We cannot let that happen in India," Dr. Stranton said.