n International Journal for Religious Freedom - India's defiance of religious freedom - a briefing on "anti-conversion" laws

Volume 5, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 2070-5484



While the Constitution of India provides for full religious freedom, six states have "Freedom of Religion" Acts which regulate religious conversions. These laws give the district administration wide and sweeping powers to inquire into religious conversions. They also require a person converting to another religion to give details of the conversion to the local district magistrate. Vague and wide definitions of terms such as "force," "fraud" and "inducement" or "allurement," potentially include even legitimate pursuits or actions of propagating one's faith. The laws are premised on claims that minority Christians and Muslims use duress, deception or coercion to convert poor and illiterate Hindus and threaten public order. These Acts have been harshly criticized from national and international agencies.

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