MP: Bail refused to nine persons held in conversion case

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Indore, Jan 28 (PTI) A local court on Thursday rejected bail applications of nine persons arrested under the new stringent law in Madhya Pradesh after a woman alleged that she was forced to convert to Christianity by her parents.

Additional Sessions Judge Yatindra Kumar Guru dismissed the bail pleas of the accused including the complainant's parents.

'It does not seem appropriate to give the benefit of bail to the accused looking at the facts and circumstances submitted to the court,' the judge said in the order.

The accused said in their pleas that they belong to Backward Classes and police has framed them in a false case.

They were at Satprakashan Sanchar Kendra, a Christian community centre, to celebrate Republic Day and there was no priest present, so no conversion was possible at the venue, the accused claimed.

But the prosecution alleged that parents of the 25- year-oldHindu woman took her to the Centre on the pretext of visiting her maternal grandmother's place.

A prayer meeting was being held at the centre, located near the Bhanwarkuan police station, and the woman was forced to convert to Christianity, the prosecution claimed.

After hearing the arguments, the judge rejected the bail applications.

Earlier this month, the BJP government in Madhya Pradesh promulgated the Freedom of Religion-2020 ordinance, which provides for 10 years in jail for fraudulent conversion in some cases.

Last week, a man was arrested in Barwani and another in Bhopal in separate cases under the new law. PTI HWP LAL KRK KRK