Kerala orders probe into religious conversion

Thiruvananthapuram : A report about 35 people getting converted to Hinduism Sunday would be probed by a senior police official, Kerala Home Minister Ramesh Chennithala said.

The conversion reportedly took place Sunday morning in Alappuzha and Kollam districts.

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In Alappuzha, members of eight Christian families – a total of 30 people – reportedly embraced Hinduism at a temple function organised by the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP).

In Kollam, there were five people who reportedly became Hindus.

Additional Director General of Police A. Hemachandran has been asked to probe the matter and submit a report, Chennithala told reporters here Sunday.

“He will look into whether any law was violated,” he said.

The VHP, meanwhile, said all those who became Hindus Sunday decided to convert on their own, and all the organisation did was to prepare the stage for it.

Reports said another 300 people in Alappuzha have expressed their desire to embrace Hinduism, and the conversion ceremony was likely to take place on Christmas day.

Bharatiya Janata Party president Amit Shah, who was in the state Saturday, said his party was against forced religious conversion.

Communist Party of India-Marxist state secretary Pinarayi Vijayan, who is currently in Delhi to take part in the politburo meeting, alleged that the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh was behind Sunday’s conversions.

In Kerala, Hindus comprise more than 50 percent of the 32 million population, followed by Muslims with 24 percent while Christians occupy the third place with 22 percent.