Uttarakhand cabinet nod to bring anti-conversion bill to assembly
The Uttarakhand cabinet has approved a tough new draft anti-conversion law which the government is likely to introduce in the assembly’s budget session this month, an official said on Tuesday.
The cabinet meeting, chaired by chief minister Trivendra Singh Rawat, approved the draft legislation on Monday night, the official added.
If the bill is passed, Uttarakhand will join states like Odisha, Madhya Pradesh, Chattisgarh, Himachal Pradesh and Gujarat that have anti-conversion laws.
According to the official, who was present at the cabinet meeting, the bill makes forced conversion a non-bailable offence. Anyone seeking conversion is required to submit an application and an affidavit with the district magistrate one month in advance. Any failure to adhere to the guidelines might mean jail terms ranging from three months to a year. “The law (also) proposes that any marriage solemnised for religious conversion will be considered illegal,” added the official.
It wasn’t immediately clear how the law would distinguish between genuine inter-faith marriages which sometimes involve religious conversion and those solemnised for religious conversion. The state is taking up the legislation days after the SC upheld the marriage of a 26-year-old Kerala woman, Hadiya, who converted to Islam and wed a Muslim man.
Chief minister Jai Ram Thakur on Monday laid foundation stones of projects worth ₹112 crore in Bilaspur district on Monday. Addressing a meeting at Ghawandal Chowk, the CM announced that a government degree college will be opened at Swarghat in Naina Devi assembly segment. The CM said the government will take over Shakti Senior Secondary School, Naina Devi and open a Primary Education Block office in Naina Devi.
With the monsoon likely to hit Himachal Pradesh on Tuesday, the Indian Meteorological Department has issued a four-day yellow alert for heavy rainfall coupled with thunderstorms in 10 districts of the state, barring Kinnaur and Lahaul-Spiti. Shimla meteorological centre director Surender Paul said, “Thunderstorms accompanied by lightning and gusty winds blowing at a speed of 30- 40km/hr are expected in the hill state between June 28 and July 1.”
From history sheeters to an engineer, cricket organiser, transporter, railway clerk, and income tax officer around 171 people from different walks of life have been arrested in the Himachal Pradesh constable recruitment case so far, officials said on Monday. Director general of police Sanjay Kundu said the 171 persons arrested include 116 candidates, fathers of nine candidates, and 46 agents, of which 21 were from the hill state, while 25 were from other states.
In a major health-infrastructure boost for Mohali, the AAP-led Punjab government in its maiden budget on Monday announced another super-specialty medical institute for the district. Finance minister Harpal Singh Cheema, while presenting the Punjab budget, also said the Punjab government aimed to make Mohali a hub of industry and information technology. As announced, the Punjab government will set up the state-of-the-art “Punjab Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences” at Mohali.
A 55-year-old man became the latest victim of Covid-19 in Mohali on Monday, even as tricity's active cases once again crossed the 1000 mark after over four months. The deceased patient, a resident of Kakoli Chhat, Mohali, was also suffering from sepsis and died at the civil hospital in Phase 6. Amid the rising cases, this was the third Covid death in Mohali district in the past 15 days.