Law panel for ban on conversion for marriage

Amid controversy surrounding former Haryana deputy chief minister Chandra Mohan a.k.a Chand Moham-med’s remarriage to Anuradha Bali a.k.a Fiza after converting to Islam, the Law Commission on Wednesday recommended changes in the existing matrimonial and penal laws to specifically make such conversions illegal and punishable.

In its latest report - “Preventing Bigamy Via Conversion to Islam” - submitted to the government, the Commission recommended to the government for insertion of a new provision in the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 to prevent Hindu men from
converting for remarriage, unless the first marriage was lawfully dissolved.

“Married men whose personal law does not allow bigamy have been resorting to the unhealthy and immoral practice of converting to Islam for the sake of contracting a second bigamous marriage...” the Commission noted.

It said a new provision should be added to prevent married Hindu men from remarrying after changing their religion.

“The practice of fake conversion to Islam with a view to contracting a second marriage, prevalent among the non-Muslims,
was outlawed by the Supreme Court its Sarla Mudgal ruling of 1995, reaffirmed five years later in the Lily Thomas case,” Commission Member Tahir Mahmood, who authored the report, told HT.

He said despite the legal position being settled, it was being blatantly violated in some cases.


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