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Delhi violence, Trump's refusal to comment on CAA dominate US media

CAA has been a major bone of contention in the Indian political circles since it was passed by Parliament in December last year

Wednesday February 26, 2020 9:02 AM, ummid.com News Network

US Media on Trump's India Visit

New Delhi: The US media did not mince words in highlighting the violence in North-East Delhi around the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA) amid Donald Trump's two-day India trip, even as most of the Indian media gave it an expansive coverage.

A number of reports and articles published in leading US media outlets spoke in detail about the tension and violence that has gripped Northeast Delhi since Sunday that started with a clash between pro and anti-CAA groups, resulting in the death of 10 people, including a policeman.

Commenting on Trump's refusal to comment on the CAA, citing it as India's internal matter, the US media described the new citizenship law -- being opposed by people all across India -- as "anti-Muslim".

"Wrapping up a two-day trip to India, President Trump declined on Tuesday to condemn India's new citizenship law, which discriminates against Muslims..." was the opening line of a news piece in a major American newspaper.

The CAA has been a major bone of contention in the Indian political circles since it was passed by Parliament in December last year.

India has witnessed protests across the country, with many claiming the CAA "discriminates" against the Muslims as it seeks to provide citizenship to only non-Muslims of Pakistani, Bangladesh and Afghanistan who have faced persecution in those Muslim-majority countries. Critics are also upset over the use of religion as the basis to decide citizenship which they say is against the Indian Constitution.

The Central government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has of late stated that Muslims in India won't be affected by the CAA. However, the assurance has failed to do anything significant to quell the fears as the speeches of Union Minister Amit Shah explaining the "CAA-NRC-NPR Chronology" refuse to fade away from people's mind.

On Tuesday, another American media group said Trump seemed to have backed Modi government's CAA, as the US President refused to criticise the Act during a press conference in New Delhi.

"Trump appeared to back Modi's concern that the majority-Hindu country is being overrun by Muslims," one of the reports that appeared in a leading US newspaper read.

The US media said Trump refused to answer anything on CAA when he was asked about it. "I don't want to discuss that, and hopefully they're going to make the right decision for the people," he said.

Another leading US newspaper, well known for its criticism of Trump, reported the Delhi violence from a "communal" perspective. The paper, in its report, also spoke about "Modi's Hindu nationalism" and related this with the tension in the neighbourhoods of east Delhi.

"The fighting in Delhi signalled a dire new phase in the country's internal divisions under Modi", it said.

An opinion piece by the same newspaper also discussed about a ban on Modi by the US post 2002 Gujarat riots, which was lifted after he became Prime Minister in 2014.

"When he became Prime Minister in the spring of 2014, the travel ban was lifted, and later that year, Modi made his first triumphant visit to the United States, where he had a private dinner with President Barack Obama."

The write-up also said: "Trump is popular in India, where 2019 polling by the Pew Research Centre found 56% of citizens expressed confidence in him to handle world affairs -- one of just a half-dozen nations to register a majority on that question. In many other countries, he is more apt to draw crowds of protesters than admirers. Attendees at Monday's rally (in Ahmedabad's Motera) seemed dazzled."

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