Karnataka

Christian leaders urge Governor not to give assent to anti-conversion Ordinance

Christian religious leaders handing over the letter of appeal to Governor Thaawarchand Gehlot at Raj Bhavan in Bengaluru on Monday.

Christian religious leaders handing over the letter of appeal to Governor Thaawarchand Gehlot at Raj Bhavan in Bengaluru on Monday. | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

A delegation of Christian religious leaders met Governor Thaawarchand Gehlot on Monday and appealed to him not give assent to the Karnataka Protection of Right to Freedom of Religion Ordinance.

The leaders told the Governor that the entire Christian community in Karnataka opposed the proposed legislation, which is also known as anti-conversion Bill, and questioned the need for such an exercise when sufficient laws and court directives were in place to monitor any violation. Referring to the Fundamental Rights enshrined in Article 25 and Article 26, the delegation said that introducing such laws would infringe on the rights of citizens, especially of the minority community.

The delegation said that the Backward Classes and Minorities Welfare Department had earlier ordered a survey of official and unofficial Christian missionaries, institutions and establishments in the State. “When all the relevant data is already available, why do we need yet another futile exercise? Why only Christians are being targeted and marked for this arbitrary, fallacious and illogical move? What is the motive that is driving them to do?” they wondered.

In the memorandum, the delegation said that it was indeed a matter of great concern that the anti-conversion Bill would become a tool for the fringe elements to take law into their own hands and vitiate the atmosphere with provocations, false accusations, and triggering communal unrest in the otherwise peaceful State.

It also said that thousands of educational institutions and hospitals were run by the Christian community and no complaint of forced conversion had been reported. A few stray and sporadic incidents of conversion should not show the entire community in bad light.

In the interest and welfare of the Christian community in the State, the delegation strongly appealed to the Governor to refrain from giving his assent to the Ordinance.


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Printable version | Jun 21, 2022 7:06:24 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/christian-leaders-urge-governor-not-to-give-assent-to-anti-conversion-ordinance/article65420163.ece