Union external Affairs minister SM Krishna will convey to Pakistan the Indian Parliament’s concern over the condition of minorities there.
He said this in the Rajya Sabha while replying to a discussion on the alleged excesses on minorities in that country.
Earlier, BJP leaders Vinay Katiyar, Prakash Javadekar, Avinash Rai Khanna, Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi and Thawarchand Gehlot made vociferous demands for the matter to be taken up immediately, even leading to the House being adjourned for some time.
Krishna told the House that the government had come across reported incidents of persecution, intimidation and conversions of minorities in Pakistan, including one in which three Hindu girls in Singh were allegedly forcibly converted to Islam and married against their wishes to Muslim men. “Members have expressed concern and we'll take note of such sentiments,” he said.
Asked by BJP leader Ravi Shankar Prasad whether the government would express its concerns to Pakistan just as it had done in the case of Sri Lankan Tamils, Krishna said, “I'll certainly convey it to my counterpart….. We have understood the sense of the House.”
He also told the House that the Pakistan President had called for a report on the purported forced conversion from the Singh government.
Later, speaking on the Copyright Bill after Krishna's statement, lyricist Javed Akhtar devoted a few minutes to the issue, upholding India's record on minority protection vis-à-vis Pakistan.