A. Muh. Ibnu Aqil, Jakarta – Indonesia has joined in the chorus of Muslim majority countries condemning Indian politicians whose remarks are deemed to have insulted the Prophet Muhammad.
"Indonesia strongly condemns unacceptable derogatory remarks against Prophet Muhammad PBUH (peace be upon him) by two Indian politicians. This message has been conveyed to the Indian Ambassador in Jakarta," the Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Tuesday.
India's ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) national spokeswoman Nupur Sharma reportedly made the said remarks in a recent televised debate.
Another BJP's spokesman head Naveen Kumar Jindal had reportedly posted a now-deleted social media post about Islam.
Several gulf countries such as Qatar and Kuwait had issued statements condemning the Indian politicians' remarks and summoned Indian envoys expressing the disagreements.
India's neighbor Pakistan also summoned the Indian Charge d'Affaires and conveyed its rejection and condemnation of the "highly derogatory remarks" made by the two BJP senior officials about Prophet Muhammad.
The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) general secretariat also denounced the "denigration of Prophet Muhammad by an official of India's ruling party".
The organization says that the statements were part of growing hate and defamation of Islam and systemic practices against Indian Muslims.
The OIC also urged Indian authorities to address such incidents and to ensure safety, security and well-being as well as protecting the religions, cultural identity and dignity of places of worship of Muslims in India.
"The general secretariat calls on the international community, in particular, the United Nations mechanisms and the Human Rights Council's special measures, to take necessary measures to challenge practices targeting Muslims in India," the group said in a statement on Sunday.
In response to the controversy, on Sunday the BJP had suspended its spokeswoman Nupur Sharma while its official Naveen Jindal was expelled from the party, Reuters reported.
The party also issued a statement that it respected all religions and that it denounced insults of any religious personalities of any religion.
"The Bharatiya Janata Party is also strongly against any ideology which insults or demeans any sect or religion. The BJP does not promote such people or philosophy," the party said in a statement on Sunday.