Didn't discuss Delhi violence with Modi, it's up to India: Donald Trump backs Modi over CAA
New Delhi, Feb 26: US President Donald Trump on Tuesday said he did not discuss with Prime Minister Narendra Modi about the new citizenship law when the capital witnessed fresh violence during his visit.
When asked at a press conference about the violence in Delhi over the new law, which critics claim discriminates against the Muslim community, President Trump said it was "up to India" to deal with it.
"As far as individual attacks are concerned, I have heard about them. I didn't discuss that with him. It is up to India," the US president said hours after he held restricted and delegation level talks with Modi.
Fresh bouts of violence broke out in northeast Delhi since Sunday over the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) in which 10 people were killed and over 150 injured.
"We did talk about religious freedom and I would say that the Prime Minister was incredible on what he said. He wants people to have religious freedom, and very strongly said that in India they have worked very hard to have great and open religious freedom," the US president said.
"If you look back and look at what is going on relatively to other places, specially, they (India) have really worked hard on religious freedom," Trump said at the press conference.
On his views on the CAA, Trump said: "I don''t want to discuss that, I want to leave that to India. I hope they will do the right thing for the people of India."
Asked specifically about allegations that Muslims are being subjected to discrimination and there have been rising cases of hate crime in India, Trump said: "We did discuss that and specifically Muslims. We also discussed Christians."
"I had a very powerful answer from the prime minister. We talked about religious liberty for a long period of time in front of lot of people. I had a very very powerful answer I think," he said.
Trump said Modi told him that "they are working closely with the Muslim community".
India has witnessed massive protests over the new citizenship law and National Population Register with opposition parties and several rights groups alleging that the measures are aimed at marginalising the Muslim community.
The national capital witnessed massive violence in the midst of Trump''s high-profile visit. The government on Monday said the violence was triggered to tarnish India''s image.
In a media statement after his talks with PM Modi earlier, Trump said both the countries have always been united by shared traditions of democracy and constitutions that protect freedom, individual rights, and the rule of law.
"As we deepen our partnership with India, we remember that our two countries have always been united by shared traditions of democracy and constitutions that protect freedom, individual rights, and the rule of law," he said.