India is being pressured to act after top officials of the ruling party made comments that sparked anger in the Muslim world. This sparked riots at home, as well as threats from Al Qaeda.
Both Naveen Jindal and Nupur Sharma, spokespeople of the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party made speculative comments that were seen to be insulting Islam's Prophet Muhammad, and Aisha.
Sharma made comments on the prophet's private lives during a TV debate. A complaint was filed against Sharma for "inciting people to divisive lines", Delhi Police stated on Thursday. A complaint is usually the first step in any Indian police investigation. It is followed by interrogation.
Sharma, who made the TV appearance, explained that her comments on the prophet were in response to "continuous disrespect and insult" towards a Hindu god and that she had withdrawn that statement. However, she was suspended that day by the BJP.
Jindal was also expelled from the party for comments he made on social media about Islam.
However, their comments were already criticized in certain Middle Eastern countries as blasphemy. New Delhi was left with little to no choice but to respond.
As calls for boycotting Indian goods became more prominent on social media, several countries, including Saudi Arabia and Iran, Oman Kuwait, Qatar, Kuwait, Kuwait, and Qatar, protested against India.
After a letter attributed as Al Qaeda warning of Islamist attacks was circulated among Indian media outlets earlier this week, the government increased public security.
This week, protests were also held in many major cities like Mumbai, Kolkata, and Ahmedabad.
After protests for several days over the remarks, thousands rallied from Jamaat-e-Islami Pakistan party and briefly clashed with police in Pakistan's capital Islamabad.
Saudi Arabia could cut ties to India, which would "undoubtedly jeopardize foreign capital," Taushif Kar, a researcher at the University of Cambridge, said in an email to NBC News on Thursday.
India's trade with the Gulf Cooperation Council, which includes Kuwait and Qatar, Saudi Arabia. Bahrain, Oman, Oman, Oman, Oman, and the UAE, was approximately $90 billion in 2020-21. Millions of Indians work and live in GCC countries. New Delhi is also dependent on oil-rich Gulf Arab States to fuel its energy-hungry economy.
India's foreign ministry stated that the comments and tweets were not intended to reflect the views or policies of the government.
Kara stated that India's 200 million Muslims were "systematically targeted" and now considered a threat to the nation by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
He said, "This isn't just the continued persecution of a minority but a radical reconfiguration of the very idea India."
Rights groups like Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and Human Rights Watch also accuse Modi's party. They say Modi's party sometimes allows hate speech against Muslims (14 percent) of India's 1.4 million people.
In its June report to Congress, the State Department on international religious freedom, it claimed that attacks on minority members, including murders and assaults, occurred in India from 2021.