India condemns a Florida pastor's plan to burn copies of the Quran, and the government hopes the U.S. will take strong action against him, Home Minister Palaniappan Chidambaram said in New Delhi.
Terry Jones, pastor of the Dove World Outreach Center in Gainesville, has been criticized by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and the Vatican for his plan to burn the Muslim holy book on Sept. 11. Gen. David Petraeus, commander of international coalition forces in Afghanistan, said the act would endanger U.S. troops.
Chidambaram urged Indian newspapers not to publish photographs of what he said would be a “deplorable act” and asked television channels to refrain from broadcasting images. The media must show restraint over the “next couple of days and help in maintaining communal peace and harmony,” the minister said, reading a government statement.
The proposed burning “is totally unbecoming of anyone who claims to be a man of religion,” Chidambaram said. About 13 percent of India’s 1.2 billion people are Muslim.
Facing mounting criticism around the world and at home, Jones says supporters have sent him copies of the Quran to burn and he is not convinced “that backing down is the right thing to do,” Associated Press reported.
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