Bengaluru, May 18, 2022: Bengaluru Archbishop Peter Machado on Wednesday said that the entire Christian community is deeply hurt and is disturbed as anti-conversion became a law in Karnataka.
"The entire Christian Community is deeply hurt and is disturbed that the government has let down the Christian populace living in the state," the archbishop said after Governor Thawar Chand Gehlot gave his assent to the anti-conversion bill.
"For the past couple of months, we repeatedly drew the attention of the state government and general public that this said bill was irrelevant and malicious, and it only aimed at dividing the Christians from other religious minorities," he added.
The archbishop further stated that Christian community feels betrayed as its selfless services in the fields of education, healthcare and other sectors were taken into consideration.
Earlier, the bishop’s office said that it would take legal action if Karnataka Governor approved the ordinance.
The anti-conversion bill is aimed at preventing conversion by means of ’allurement’, ’coercion’, ’force’, ’fraudulent means’, and also ’mass’, conversion. According to the government, these instances cause disturbance of ’public order’ in the state.
The bill also proposes imprisonment of three to five years with a fine of Rs 25,000 for ‘forced’ conversion. The bill also states that converting a minor, woman or an SC/ST person will attract a jail term of three to 10 years, with a Rs 50,000 fine. Mass conversions will attract three to 10 years of jail time, with a fine of up to Rs one lakh.
Courtesy: India Today