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93% Muslims view Hindus favourably, but only 65% Hindus view Muslims positively


While 93 percent of Muslims viewed Hindus favourably, only 65 percent Hindus viewed Muslims in a positive light, reveals a new study.

The report, released by US think tank Pew Research Center Tuesday, is based on a survey of 3,505 Indians that was conducted between September and October 2018.

The report also revealed that “people who are members of a particular religious, racial or ethnic group had significantly more favorable views of their own group than they did of groups to which they do not adhere or belong”.

For instance, 96 percent Hindus and 98 percent of Muslims viewed their own communities positively.

The survey titled ‘Attitudes Toward Diversity in 11 Emerging Economies’ was conducted in Colombia, Jordan, Kenya, Lebanon, Mexico, South Africa, Tunisia, Venezuela, Vietnam, and India.

Due to the different cultural contexts of the 11 countries surveyed, the researchers focused on different sets of groups in each country.

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The groups surveyed in India were Hindus and Muslims, Muslims and Christians were surveyed in the Philippines, while Blacks, Whites and Coloured people were surveyed in South Africa.

56% Hindus interacted with Muslims in India

According to the survey 70 percent of Muslims frequently or occasionally interact with Hindus in India, while only 56 percent Hindus interact with their Muslims counterparts.

It also noted that people who “interact more with other religious groups also tend to have more favorable opinions of them”.

Of the Hindus who said they interacted with people outside their own faith — 71 percent had a favourable view of Muslims.

As opposed to this, just 56 percent of Hindus, who reported infrequent contact with people of other religions, said they viewed Muslims favourably, indicating a 15 percent difference. 

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Survey was conducted prior to anti-CAA protests

The report revealed that 68 percent of the Indians surveyed said the country is “bettered” with people from different backgrounds.

Only 16 percent said the diversity made the country a “worse” place to live, while 10 percent said it made “no difference”.

However, in a footnote, the think tank specified that the survey was conducted in late 2018 and preceded “the new citizenship law enacted by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in early 2020, as well as the ensuing sectarian violence”.

The controversial Citizenship Amendment Act or the CAA was passed in December 2019, triggering a series of protests across India in December 2019 and early January. The law was seen as being discriminatory against Muslims in the country.