RELEVANCE OF THIS ARTICLE | This news item is related to Constitutional Law
ARTICLE 25 – 28 | Right to freedom of religion
ARTICLE 21 – Right to choose
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What happened ? The Central Government told the Lok Sabha that it has no plans for enacting an anti-conversion law to curb inter-faith marriages.
REASON | Interfaith marriage- State concern
The Union Minister of State G Kishan Reddy said that the religious conversion for inter- faith marriage is a state concern and that that law enforcement agencies took action whenever such instances of violation occurs.
While answering to the question ‘whether the government is of the view that interfaith marriages are happening due to forceful conversions and does it have evidence with respect to the same’ the Union Minister said- “Public order and police are state subjects as per the Seventh Schedule to the Constitution and hence, prevention, detection, registration, investigation and prosecution of offences related to religious conversions are primarily the concerns of state governments and Union Territory administrations.
Action is taken as per existing laws by law enforcing agencies whenever instances of violation come to notice.”
Religious conversion ordinances in states
Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh governments have passed ordinances to criminalize forced religious conversions. However, the laws have proven to be open to rampant misuse, especially against interfaith couples who wish to marry of their own accord. In Uttar Pradesh, the law has been used multiple times to harass and jail consenting adult couples. States like Assam and Karnataka are also planning to bring laws to cur inter-faith marriages.
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