‘Love jihad’ not defined under law, says Centre

Union Minister of State for Home G. Kishan Reddy   | Photo Credit: Nagara Gopal

The Centre on Tuesday said the term ‘Love Jihad’ is not defined under the law, and no such case has been reported by any of the Central agencies.

Union Minister of State for Home G. Kishan Reddy said Article 25 of the Constitution provides for the freedom to profess, practice and propagate religion subject to public order, morality and health. “Various courts, including the Kerala High Court, have upheld this view,” he said in a written reply.

“The term ‘Love Jihad’ is not defined under the extant laws. No such case of ‘Love Jihad’ has been reported by any of the Central agencies,” Mr. Reddy said to a question by Congress MP Benny Behanan on “whether Central agencies have reported any case of ‘Love Jihad’ from Kerala during the past two years and if so, the details thereof?”

Mr. Reddy, however, said two cases from Kerala involving inter-faith marriage had been probed by the National Investigation Agency.

Syro-Malabar Church firm on its stance on ‘love jihad’

The synod of the bishops of the Syro-Malabar Church says it has not approached the issue of ‘love jihad’ in a way that would affect the longstanding friendship with the Muslim community.

In a statement here on Tuesday, the Syro-Malabar Media Commission said the synod had only expressed its opinion that inter-religious love affairs caused family troubles and that such cases should be inquired into. And, the circumstances in which the bishops raised the demand continued to exist.

The statement comes in the wake of protests against the stance of the synod on ‘love jihad’ in the second week of January. The synod had then called for inquiries into instances of ‘love jihad’ in which Christian girls fell victims to inter-religious love affairs. In some cases, such girls also joined terrorist organisations such as the Islamic State, the bishops had said.

However, Tuesday’s statement from the Church said the Union Home Ministry had made clarifications on the issue in the Lok Sabha. It had said that there were no instances of ‘love jihad’ or ‘love affairs with malicious intentions’ reported in Kerala. There was no mention of ‘love jihad’ in the existing set of laws, the government said.

The Church statement, however, said the synod’s opinion on the issue was based on information received from its various dioceses. The synod had expressed its anxiety on the issue based on the information it had received. -- Our Kochi Correspondent

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Printable version | Apr 14, 2021 7:36:25 AM |

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