London: Leading UK-based academic Lord Bhiku Parekh has described the recent lynching of a man in Dadri in Uttar Pradesh on suspicion of eating meat as "monstrous".
Describing BJP as "anti-Muslim culturally" Professor Parekh said the party is trying to turn "Muslims as culturally Hindus".
Participating in a discussion on the 'State of Indo- British Ties' at the Royal Overseas League here last night, he said "Indian politics has been sadly marred by identity politics and caste-based politics".
"Dadri incident is monstrous - for lynching a person for eating beef," he said.
Participating in the discussion ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit next week, former Foreign Secretary Krishnan Srinivasan described the incident as "minuscule".
He said the bane of Indian parties is that they are always fighting elections and during the elections, BJP turns itself to its core group - RSS.
Describing the trouble creators as "lunatic fringe", he hoped Modi will check these elements and come down heavily on them.
Referring to the state of Indo-British ties, former British Secretary of State for Business Sir Vince Cable said the new Immigration Policy pursued by the government regarding student visas has affected overseas students, particularly from India coming to the UK.
"Indian students now go to Australia, USA and Canada. It does not help improve?good relations with India," he said, adding: "Migration from India to the UK is not an issue but student problem is. The issues concern fees and working after studies. There is no quarrel with UK on its shutting down Fly by Night educational institutions."
Parekh said: "Immigration was an issue in India 20 years ago. It is not anymore. Student Visa is and the amount of college fees yes. He said while the indigenous students are charged 8,000 to 9,000 pounds, overseas students from India pay over 15,000 pounds per annum.
"All these points are irritation."
Rahul Roy Chaudhury, a Fellow at the International Institute for Strategic Studies said "there is huge potential for defence cooperation between UK and India. The UK is primarily look at trade, security cooperation."
Lord Raj Loomba said Prime Minister Modi's visit from November 12 will help improve bilateral ties.
"Once ties are strengthened politically, socially and culturally, there will be tremendous impact," he said.
He said there was a lot of areas where there are rooms for improvement. One such area was the legal system, he pointed out.
"At present British lawyers cannot practice in India and the British companies have to do business through Indian lawyers," he added.