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"The Law Acts As Juggernaut For Hateful, Divisive And Schismatic Propaganda" Madhya Pradesh Freedom Of Religion Ordinance 2020 Challenged In SC

Nupur Thapliyal
15 Feb 2021 4:57 PM GMT
The Law Acts As Juggernaut For Hateful, Divisive And Schismatic Propaganda Madhya Pradesh Freedom Of Religion Ordinance 2020 Challenged In SC
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"It is unfortunate that the political and communal gimmick of 'Love Jihad,' which was earlier solely confined to the 'Us vs Them' narrative espoused by fake-propaganda machines (eg. 'WhatsApp University,' shady social media outlets, etc.), political rallies and societal fringes, has manifested itself as a legislation."

A petition has been filed in the Apex Court challenging the Madhya Pradesh Freedom of Religious Ordinance, 2020 as being violative of Art. 14, 19, 21 and 25 of the Constitution of India. The petition is filed by Advocate on Record, Aldanish Rein and drawn by Advocates Rajesh Inamdar, Shashwat Anand, Devesh Saxena, Ashutosh Mani Tripathi and Ankur Azad. Followed by the pending challenges to...

A petition has been filed in the Apex Court challenging the Madhya Pradesh Freedom of Religious Ordinance, 2020 as being violative of Art. 14, 19, 21 and 25 of the Constitution of India.

The petition is filed by Advocate on Record, Aldanish Rein and drawn by Advocates Rajesh Inamdar, Shashwat Anand, Devesh Saxena, Ashutosh Mani Tripathi and Ankur Azad.

Followed by the pending challenges to UP Unlawful Conversion of Religion Ordinance, 2020 and Uttarakhand Freedom of Religion Act, 2018, the petition states that "The impugned Ordinance in transgressing upon the freedom to marry, freedom to profess, practice and propagate any religion, and right to privacy, has guillotined the individuals' personal autonomy, equality under the law, personal liberty and the freedom of choice and expression, in blatant and flagrant violation of the fundamental rights of the individuals as guaranteed under Articles 14, 19, 21 and 25 of the Constitution of India, 1950."

Submitting on the process of passing the impugned Ordinance, the petition terms the legislative process of the MP Assembly a "fraud on the Constitution".

"The impugned Ordinance promulgated by the Respondents is a text book example of blatant abuse of the powers vested under Article 213 of the Constitution. The action of the Respondents in promulgating ordinances, bypassing the legislative process of Assembly, is not only arbitrary and violative of Article 14 of the Constitution but is also a fraud on the Constitution itself." The petition reads.

Moreover, the petition also highlights the absence of requisite data available with government agencies or departments on the "forced conversions" as stipulated in the Ordinance.

In view of this, it is the submission of the petitioner that "It is apparent that is no available data for something as imaginary as the 'conspiracy theory' and hoax of 'Love Jihad.' Manifestly, no such urgent situation existed and it was not a fit case for an Ordinance to be issued."

Furthermore, the petitioner while praying for the Ordinance to be declared as being unconstitutional, states:

"The law which seeks to preserve the power asymmetries in the existing social hierarchies negates the concept of transformative constitutionalism by coercing an individual to lay down his treasured fundamental rights before the State-sponsored status quo. Furthermore, the law acts as a juggernaut for hateful, divisive and schismatic propaganda by fanning communal passions, and this Hon'ble Court must denounce it and strike it down to the abyss of oblivion."

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