ISLAMABAD - State Minister for Information and Broadcasting Farrukh Habib has said that India’s official news agency has now become a mouthpiece of BJP that consistently spreading false and misleading information about Pakistan.

While addressing at a panel discussion on ‘India: A Largest Democracy or a Fake Union?’ organised by the Institute of Regional Studies, he slammed Indian’s discriminatory attitude towards minorities, he said, ‘it was the very reason that Sikh community is demanding separation from India’. He said that referendum by Sikhs, in this regard; clearly demonstrate Sikh community’s resolve to have a separate state for them where they could enjoy religious, political and social freedom.

He further continued that even pro-Indian Kashmiri leadership in Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK) have expressed their anger over New Delhi’s unilateral action of sabotaging Kashmir’s autonomy. Habib also told the participants that the Muslims girls in India especially in Gujrat, Rajasthan, and Karnataka were not feeling secure after the incidents of harassments cases of Hijab wearing girls appeared on media. Concluding his talk, state minister said that Pakistani youth, academicians, journalists and people from all walks of life need to work in tandem to dislodge Indian propaganda against Pakistan.

While speaking on the occasion, Ambassador Asif Ali Khan Durrani said that the very foundation of India was secular and literally on-religious in its entirety. He argued that it was India’s constitution that kept the people of India united for a very long time but today the situation has changed altogether. Durrani warned that rising racism in India would further consolidate polarization in Indian polity and society which ultimately affect the whole region. The session moderator, Dr Salma Malik, Assistant Professor at QAU said, ‘India as union has undergone many changes since the rise of Modi in India that have challenged the very basis of Indian democracy’.

Dr Arshi Saleem Hashmi, Associate Professor at NDU argued that a kind of autonomy that Indian unions were enjoying have significantly gone down in recent years. Dr Hashmi warned that the unprecedented rise of corporate-Hindutva alliance that was basically engineered to prevent indigenous revolts against India’s racist policies. She emphasized that the sharp decline in India’s ranking in religious and press freedom, judiciary, and human rights indexes speak volumes about polarization in Indian polity and society.

Syed Muhammad Ali, Director Strategic Defence, Security and Policy at Centre for Aerospace & Security Studies (CASS), said that India’s massive investment in building a global information network in the last fifteen years, has made it able to not only hide but also justify its racist policies to the world. He said that there was a need to invest more in building information infrastructure in Pakistan not only to counter Indian propaganda but also to project and promote the right narrative of Pakistan.