As the Christian community has been at the receiving end from BJP and some right-wing leaders over alleged forced conversion, prompting the administration to order a survey of churches, a right group has filed a petition seeking an interim order on the survey. The Karnataka High Court bench headed by Justice Ritu Raj Awasthi declined to pass an interim order and asked the government to submit the statement of objections in 3 weeks’ time and adjourned the hearing.
Recently, a series of alleged religious conversions cases were reported from Yadgir, Chitradurga, Dharwad and other areas and the video of villagers and Hindu groups confronting missionaries had gone viral.
Chitradurga district MLA Goolihatti Shekhar had openly stated about the conversion mafia in the assembly and also told that his mother had converted to Christianity. As a panel member of the backward class commission, when the chairman was absent in the recent meeting, Shekhar took over as chairman and ordered the survey, and directed all the district administrations to carry out the process.
Arch Bishop Peter Machado had expressed disappointment over the allegation and survey on churches. He opined that the survey will give a free hand to fringe groups to target the community and churches.
With growing concern from the Christian community over the survey, the Peoples Union for Civil Liberties Karnataka chapter filed a Public Interest Litigation and former advocate general of Karnataka Ravi Varma Kumar is arguing the case.