Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot has taken a public stand against a proposed law against ‘love jihad’ to be enacted by at least three state governments, all headed by the BJP in Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Haryana. Gehlot said that the phenomenon of ‘love jihad’ was manufactured by the BJP to divide the nation and disturb communal harmony.
In a series of tweets, Gehlot said, “Love Jihad is a word manufactured by BJP to divide the Nation & disturb communal harmony. Marriage is a matter of personal liberty, bringing a law to curb it is completely unconstitutional & it will not stand in any court of law. Jihad has no place in Love.”
His subsequent tweet read, “They are creating an environment in the nation where consenting adults would be at the mercy of state power. Marriage is a personal decision & they are putting curbs on it, which is like snatching away personal liberty.”
It seems a ploy to disrupt communal harmony, fuel social conflict & disregard constitutional provisions like the state not discriminating against citizens on any ground.
— Ashok Gehlot (@ashokgehlot51) November 20, 2020
The Rajasthan chief minister added that the BJP was conspiring to ‘disrupt communal harmony, fuel social conflict & disregard constitutional provisions like the state not discriminating against citizens on any ground.’
This came after three state governments, all ruled by the BJP, said that they will enact a law to stop Muslim men from marrying Hindu women. According to Madhya Pradesh Home Minister Narottam Mishra, the ‘love jihad’ bill will have a provision of five years of jail term.
The term ‘love jihad’ is often used by Hindutva bigots to refer to inter-faith marriages where brides are Hindu and grooms Muslim.
Experts have said that the law on ‘love jihad’ will not stand the test of law as the right to marry a person of one’s choice is enshrined under Article 21 of the constitution.