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Indian court overturns parts of anti-conversion law

Catholic World News - September 04, 2012

Declaring that “a person not only has the right to freedom of conscience, the right to profess one's faith, the right to change faith, but also has the right to keep secret one's beliefs,” the high court in the northern Indian state of Himachal Pradesh has struck down portions of a 2006 anti-conversion law.

The unconstitutional parts of the legislation required potential converts to notify civil officials of their intent and required a state inquiry into each conversion.

“It is a very positive step; Christians will benefit greatly,” said Father Dominic D’Abrio of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of India. “The ruling could set a precedent and have a domino effect, encouraging other appeals against anti-conversion laws of the same kind in force in other states of the Indian federation.”

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