Sunday, June 25, 2023

How has the "love jihad" campaign affected interfaith relationships in India?

 The "love jihad" campaign has had a negative impact on interfaith relationships in India. While interfaith unions between Hindus and Muslims are rare in India, the "love jihad" conspiracy theory has been used by Hindu nationalist groups to discourage such relationships

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 The theory claims that Muslim men target Hindu women for conversion to Islam by means such as seduction, feigning love, deception, kidnapping, and marriage, as part of a broader demographic "war" by Muslims against India
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 This has led to violence against interfaith couples, with hundreds of Muslim men being assaulted, and many couples being forced to go into hiding, some have even been killed
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 The "love jihad" issue has pitted the BJP against secular activists who warn it undermines constitutional guarantees of religious freedom and puts Muslims in the crosshairs of hard-line Hindu nationalists, emboldened by a prime minister who has mostly stayed mum about rising attacks on Muslims since he was first elected in 2014
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 Some jurisdictions governed by Modi’s party have now begun trying to codify that sentiment into law. Last year lawmakers in Uttar Pradesh passed India’s first “love jihad” law, requiring couples from different religions to provide two months’ notice to an official before getting married
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