Haryana to table anti-conversion bill in upcoming budget session: Minister

Chandigarh: The Haryana government will bring in a bill against religious conversions through force or fraudulent means in the upcoming budget session of the Assembly, state Home Minister Anil Vij said here on Thursday.

Presiding over a meeting of a committee formed to draft the bill recently, the state home minister had said, “The enactment of this law will prevent any attempt to get religious conversion by force, inducement, bluff of marriage or by any other unethical methods by anyone in the state”.

On Thursday, he told reporters, We have prepared a draft of the bill against religious conversions (through force or fraud) and it will be brought in the coming budget session of Haryana Vidhan Sabha.” 

Vij had earlier said that the “drafting committee” formed to frame the bill comprised Secretary, Home-I Department, T L Satyaprakash; Additional Director General of Police Navdeep Singh Virk and Additional Advocate General Deepak Manchanda.

In November last year, Vij had announced the setting up of the three-member committee to draft a bill against “love jihad”, a term used by BJP leaders to describe religious conversions in the guise of marriage.

The announcement had come days after the Uttar Pradesh government cleared a draft ordinance against conversion through force or fraudulent means.

Vij had then told the Haryana Assembly that the state government was considering a law against “love jihad” and had sought information from Himachal Pradesh.

The Himachal Pradesh Assembly had passed a bill in 2019 against conversion by force, inducement or through a marriage solemnised for the “sole purpose” of adopting a new religion.

Replying to a calling attention motion in the Haryana Assembly on the murder of a young woman in Ballabhgarh, the state home minister had said, “Anyone can marry anyone, anyone can fall in love with anyone. But if there is a conspiracy for changing religion by trapping someone in love, then it is very important to stop that conspiracy. We will take whatever steps are required.”

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