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Aussie Senator demands diplomat's resignation over visit to RSS HQ

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Aussie Senator demands diplomats resignation over visit to RSS HQ
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camera_altAustralia's High Commissioner to India Barrel O'Farrell calls on RSS leader Mohan Bhagwat (R) _file

New Delhi: Janet Rice, a member of parliament of Australia, has urged the resignation of the country's High Commissioner to India, Barry O'Farrell, over his recent visit to the RSS headquarters.

On 15 November 2020, the diplomat had visited the RSS office at Nagpur, Maharashtra.

In her speech at the parliament, Janet Rice described the diplomat's visit "a disgrace". She said the RSS is a fascist organisation.

Transcript of Janet Rice's speech:

"I had the privilege recently in speaking in two round tables organised by Humanism Project on human rights in India. I am particularly concerned, my speaking is about RSS, which is a fascist organisation, that openly admits admiration for Adolf Hitler and the appalling genocide that occurred under his Nazi regime. The contemporary RSS rides roughshod at the people's human rights. Time and time again the RSS has attacked the Indian people's right to freedom of expression, freedom of religion and safety. Their advocacy of a Hindurashtra, is an India where by definition, minorities are denied rights and privileges. They demonise and encourage persecution of some of the non-Hindu citizens of India, particularly those of Muslim background. At this forum, I particularly raise my concern that Australia's High Commissioner to India, Barry O'Farrell, has recently met with the RSS. And he is only the second to any diplomat from any country to meet the RSS at their offices in recent times. This is a disgrace. We believe that the high commissioner should resign. I am seeking further information about what advice the department of foreign affairs has provided to him before the meeting,".

Further, in a tweet which she tagged the video of her speech in the parliament, Janet Rice said:

"The Hindu nationalist, fascist RSS has shown its disregard for human rights."

"Australia's High Commissioners play an important role on the world stage as representatives of Aus & our values. Barry O' Farrell's visit to RSS HQ runs counter to Australia's values."

Meanwhile, an online petition campaign has started, demanding the resignation of the Australian diplomat, which has earned more than 2500 signatories. The petition is addressed to Marise Payne, Australia's foreign affairs minister.

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