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UP anti-conversion law applies to all, safeguards the dignity of women: former IAS, IPS, judges, veterans | India News

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NEW DELHI: Defending Anti-Conversion law enacted by the Yogi Adityanath government in Uttar Pradesh, a group of former judges, civil servants and veterans attacked their critics on Monday, saying they appear to have “usurped” the constitutional power of judicial review to bring all of the country’s laws to trial. “Test your own whims”.
In a statement signed by 224 people, including academics, they claimed that the Uttar Pradesh Ordinance Prohibiting Illegal Conversion of Religion, which Hindutva groups refer to as the ‘love jihad’ law, applies to everyone and protects the dignity of women.
Criticizing critics of the law for calling it illegal and anti-Muslim, the statement alleges that it is a “shocking obsession of this one-sided group to fan communal fire by instigating religious minorities.”
Former UP Chief Secretary Yogendra Narain, Former Punjab Chief Secretary Sarvesh Kaushal, Former Haryana Chief Secretary Dharam Vir, Former Delhi High Court President Rajendra Menon, Former Ambassador Lakshmi Puri and former Maharashtra CEO Praveen Dixit are among the signatories to the statement.
His support for the law came days after 104 retired officials alleged that Uttar Pradesh has become the “epicenter of the politics of hatred, division and intolerance” and that government institutions are “infused with communal poison.”
They had sought repeal of the law, saying it is being used to particularly victimize Muslim men.
Against them, Monday’s statement said that the ‘Ganga-Jamuni’ culture, a colloquial term for peaceful interreligious existence, does not mean illegal conversions with criminal intent, leading to murder, mutilation, torture and betrayal of women in particular. .
“We strongly believe in a secular India with the harmonious coexistence of people of all faiths, and we regard illegal conversions with improper intent and questionable means as a threat to communal harmony … We urge all state governments to play their roles in the best public interest in maintaining law and order, social harmony and the dignity of women without succumbing to any pressure, ”she said.
The signatories said that former civil servants, who had issued a statement against the law, should have taken into account that even before India’s independence, the princely states, including Kota, Patna, Surguja, Udaipur and Kalahandi, they had passed laws on religious conversions. .
After independence, Orissa, Madhya Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand, among others, had legislated on issues related to illegal conversions, they noted, adding that the new laws reflect the changing needs of a dynamic society.
They said it is a hasty generalization based on a lonely alleged time-lapse incident in Moradabad that the law itself has been branded illegal and, in particular, anti-Muslim.
Critics lost sight of a large number of incidents in which hapless female victims have been “brutally murdered” in a gruesome manner in the course of interreligious marriages and conversions, they said, citing several cases.
The group of 104 former civil servants is “visibly biased,” they alleged, accusing them of working with an anti-establishment attitude and of taking every opportunity to “put Indian democracy, its institutions and the people who legitimately hold high positions in the wrong light. the whole world making ill-considered public statements. ”
Defenders of the law said this “politically motivated lobby group” does not represent thousands of former officials, judges, veterans and other “nationalist intellectuals” who believe in India emerging as the world’s largest democracy and “a global icon.” . bringing pride to every Indian.

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