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Karnataka government planning to introduce law to ban forceful religious conversions: Bommai

India News

Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai Tuesday said the state government is planning to introduce a law to ban forceful religious conversions in the state.

Speaking to reporters, he said, “Forceful conversions have become rampant. I have directed the district administrations to not allow any religious conversion through inducement or by force as they are illegal.”

He was responding to a question on alleged incidents of religious conversions in Kalaburagi and Byadarahalli in the state.

Last week, state Home Minister Araga Jnanendra told the legislative assembly that the government is mulling a law to regulate religious conversion as Hosadurga BJP MLA Goolihatti Shekhar had claimed that religious conversions were “rampant” across the state. The MLA in the assembly had also said 15,000 to 20,000 people, including his own mother, were converted to Christianity in his constituency.

“The issue (of religious conversions) has come to the government’s notice. Converting people from one religion to another by inducing them is a punishable offense. We will keep a strict vigil on such activities. There is a wide network working on religious conversions across the country,” Jnanendra had said in his reply in the Assembly.

Another senior BJP MLA K G Bopaiah had also said in the assembly that systematically, such religious conversions are being carried out by foreign missionaries through some organisations here.

“Religious conversions have been controlled in Uttar Pradesh through a law and it will be the right step or else it will lead to disturbance of peace in society. We have to take strong steps as it will affect society,” he said.

Nagthan MLA Devanand Fulasing Chavan said Vijayapura is home to 3.5 lakh people belonging to the Banjara community. “Churches are coming up there and people are being converted, which is leading to the division of the community,” he said.

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