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Last Updated : Nov 01 2002 12:30 Hrs IST. News Analysis Archives

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Nov 01, 2002: The Tamil Nadu Prohibition of Forcible Conversion of Religion Ordinance, 2002 has been converted into a Law when it was passed in the Tamilnadu State Assembly after a discussion that witnessed noisy scenes and heated exchanges. With the opposition parties demanding a division of votes which was allowed, 140 voted in its favour and 73 against it. The Law stipulates a prison term extending up to three years and a maximum fine of Rs 50,000 for forcible conversion. Chief Minister Jayalalithaa has assured that the legislation was not directed against any religion, but the christians missionaries were strongly opposed to the new Law which tackles the conversions by "FORCE, ALLUREMENT OR FRAUDULENT MEANS". These missionaries had closed down all Missionary Educational Institutions in Tamilnadu a few days back and had also threatened to close down if the Law is passed. Let them do that. The Government should tell the missionaries not to "CROSS" the limit or else Government will take them over and run them without the "CROSS".
Going from the frying pan into the fire.
Oct 27, 2002: Over a hundred Dalits today embraced other religions in a conversion drive organised by Dalit organisations to protest the lynching of five Dalit Hindus youths for reportedly skinning a cow. The leaders and organisations present at the ceremony, held at the Sant Ravidas temple in Sohna Chowk in Gurgaon, included the Jamait Ulema-i-Hind, Bollywood Film Director Mahesh Bhatt, president of the All India Christian council, Joseph D’souza, All India United Muslim Morcha’s Ejaz Ali and headed by Dalit leader Udit Raj.
Veer Shankar Lal Kharalia started the ceremony by choosing Islam and vowed to follow the "Manual of Terrorism". Mohammad Rafiq Azad read out the kalma, the mandatory declaration for embracing Islam and rechristened him Saddam Hussein. After the ceremony, Saddam challenged the VHP to reconvert him. 20 other Dalit Hindus followed neo-Saddam and accepted Islam.
Chandra Bhan Mehra followed and embraced Christianity and will start believing only in the "true God". This increases the urgency of denouncing the casteism in Hindus by the self-styled leaders of Hindus.
Among others who came out of Hinduism were those who embraced Buddhism, including about 20 relatives of the lynched Dalit Hindus.
Oct 26, 2002: "Hindu means thief".  DMK leader M Karunanidhi has reportedly said. Is he not a Hindu? Has he converted overnight? Does it mean India is a country of thieves? NO not at all !!! But how do we tackle these Hindus who are (so-called secular) anti-Hindus. Few organisations have taken objections to what DMK leader said. Hindu Makkal Katchi activists were arrested when they tried to protest in front of Anna Arivalayam, the DMK headquarters. BJP president M Venkaiah Naidu today warned the minority educational institutions in the State not to get involved in the protest against the conversion ordinance and said the fallout of mixing up of education with religion would be catastrophic and dangerous to the country.
Oct 19, 2002: The Communist Government of West Bengal has rejected the Vatican's claim that Mother Teresa had miraculously cured a woman suffering from a tumour. An inquiry ordered by the government has concluded that Monica Besra was cured of the ovarian tumour after months of medication, not by wearing a medallion with Mother Teresa's photograph. WILL CONGRESS NOW SAY THAT THE COMMUNISTS ARE NOT SECULAR. Meanwhile various Christian organisations in the Union Territory of Pondicherry today staged a fast near Gandhi Statue demanding Tamilnadu government to withdraw their ordinance banning forcible conversions. The fast was held following a call given by Pondicherry-Cuddalore Bishop Michael Augustine. Bishops in the State of Tamilnadu, while staging a massive protest demonstration near the Government General Hospital here today, challenged Chief Minister Jayalalithaa to prove her charge of conversion within 24 hours that monetary benefits in the range of Rs 2000 to Rs 5,000 were being offered to allure others to Christianity. The demonstration was inaugurated by Hyder Ali, Tamilnadu Muslim Munnetra Kazhagam. Abu Bakkar, activist of the party, warned that the anti-conversion law was unacceptable. Hmmm.. Are Muslims going to start Missionary activities soon? Are they tired with Islamic terrorism?
Oct 18, 2002: On Oct 16 five dalit Hindus were beaten to death in a town in Jhajjar district, Haryana, with two of them also being torched. Oh Vajpayee ji!! This is what is shameful... and not what happened in Gujarat after Godhara. Upper caste Hindus killing Lower caste Dalit Hindus. This happened when in Mumbai their was call for a "Hindu Suicide Squads" against Islamic Terrorism. According to one report, a group of men returning from the Dussehera fair informed the local Dharamshala that a cow was being skinned alive. Within minutes, few Hindus reached the Police Post where the Dalit Hindus were taking refuge. A 2000 strong mob gathered around the police post, dragged the Dalit Hindus out and lynched them while slogans like "Gau Mata Ki Jai" were being given. The other report says that Police themselves had started beating up the Hindu Dalits. Whatever be the case -- Hindus killed Hindus, just because they were suspected of killing animals. The VHP’s local chief has reportedly said that "what they were doing was wrong and they deserve to be punished." Who has given rights to VHP to punish Dalit Hindus?
What we have seen in Jhajjar is deplorable. The fact remains that caste discrimination still exists and that Dalits are treated far worse than one would treat cows and dogs. The caste system has to be abolished or else the religious conversion by "force, allurement or fraudulent means" will continue irrespective of whether we have ordinances like the recent Tamil Nadu Prohibition of Forcible Conversion of Religion Ordinance, 2002 OR any other Law.
Oct 13, 2002: Christian educational institutions in Tamil Nadu will remain closed on Oct 24 as a mark of protest against the recent ordinance prohibiting religious conversions by force, fraud or inducement.

Oct 07, 2002: The Indian state of Tamilnadu has brought an Ordinance banning religious conversion by "force, allurement or fraudulent means". The Tamil Nadu Prohibition of Forcible Conversion of Religion Ordinance, 2002, stipulates a prison term extending up to three years and a maximum fine of Rs 50,000 for forcible conversion. The All India Christian People’s Forum appealed to the state government to immediately withdraw the ordinance issued yesterday. WHY ARE CHRISTIANS WORRIED IF THEY ARE NOT CARRYING OUT THE CONVERSIONS BY "FORCE, ALLUREMENT OR FRAUDULENT MEANS"?

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