Friday, August 24, 2007

Anti Conversion law in trouble

Chhattisgarh anti-conversion Bill runs into trouble
Wednesday August 22 2007
RAIPUR: After Gujarat, the anti-conversion Bill of the BJP government in Chhattisgarh has run into trouble as the governor has raised objections to some of its provisions, official sources on Tuesday said.

The governor has objected to some of the provisions of the dharma Swatantreya adhiniyam-2006 passed by the assembly in August last year, a top official told PTI here.
Governor E S L Narsimhan and his predecessor K M Seth had raised objections to two provisions in the Bill- obtaining permission from the district collector before any conversion or face punishment and allowing people to return to Hinduism and not treating this as conversion, the official said.

Such provisions were proposed in the existing law by the BJP government as the saffron party had alleged large-scale conversion of Hindus to Christianity during the previous Congress administration led by Ajit Jogi.

The governor wanted to know why the government thought of bringing in an amendment into the existing act which was in force since the days of undivided Madhya Pradesh, the official said.

The BJP came to power in Chhattisgarh, which was carved out of Madhya Pradesh in 2000, in December 2003. Governors of Gujarat, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh, all currently ruled by BJP, had also raised
objections to provisions in similar bills with Gujarat governor naval Kishore Sharma recently returning the Bill to Narendra Modi government.