NEW DELHI: A fresh bench led by Chief Justice of India D Y Chandrachud in the Supreme Court is scheduled take up on Monday a matter related to illegal religious conversions in the country.
According to January 16's causelist, published on SC website, a bench of CJI Chandrachud and Justices P S Narasimha and J B Pardiwala would take up the PILs, initially filed by advocate Ashwini Kumar Upadhyay and others.
The matter earlier being heard by a bench led by Justice M R Shah was on January 9 ordered to be rechristened as 'In Re: The Issue of Religious Conversion Versus Ors' since a group of lawyers had objected to Upadhyay filing the PIL in his own name.
The court had then also sought assistance of Attorney General R Venkataramani to decide the pleas for stringent steps to control fraudulent religious conversions.
The pleas also sought measures to check on religious conversions through "intimidation, threatening, deceivingly luring through gifts and monetary benefits", and assist as amicus curiae.
"We want your assistance. Religious conversions by force, allurement etc. There are ways and ways, anything by allurement, if that is happening, then what should be done? What are the corrective measures," Justice Shah led bench had then asked.
Upadhyay claimed legal vacuum on the issue has led to deployment of “unethical predatory conversion strategies” to convert socially and economically backward citizens.
On December 5, the top court had observed that religious conversion should not be the purpose of charity and forced religious conversion is a "serious issue" which is against the spirit of the Constitution.
Earlier too, the court had termed the conversions through fradulent means or through allurement "a serious issue affecting the unity and integrity of the country".