India: Supreme Court Turns Down Forcible Conversion Case
Updated July 14, 2023
Supreme Court has quashed a criminal case under the Anti-Conversion laws for a conversion to Christianity allegedly being forced. According to the prosecution, Dharmendar Dohar was converted to Christianity by George Mangalapilly. He was charged with violating Sections 153(B)(1) and 295-A of the Indian Penal Code, as well as Sections 3 and 4 of the M.P. Penal Code. The Freedom of Religion Act of 1968 was enacted to protect religious freedom. In the subsequent trial, Dharmendar Dohar denied being converted by the accused throughout his examination in chief. He said that his signatures were obtained on a piece of paper by certain individuals, and that this was the basis for the prosecution of the accused. The bench relied on the statement of the man alleged to have been forcibly converted, ascribed significance to such person’s testimonies, and quashed the petition accordingly.