Religion And Inhuman Practices In India ( Exam Time Synopsis)-2020


GS 1 Current Issues


Introduction Every modern nation in the world, in their Constitutions, clearly establishes the right to freedom of religion, belief, faith, thought, and expression of all these freedoms to all its citizens.
History of social and religious reforms Banning of Sati in 1829 due to efforts of Raja Rammohan Roy; Widow Remarriage Act was passed in 1856 due to efforts of Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar; Hindu Marriage Act, 1855; Temple entry to “low castes”; Education or “Upanayana” for lower strata of society and women; Banning of cow slaughter by many States after independence; Efforts of Narayan Guru, Vivekananda, Arya Samaj, Brahma Samaj, E. V. Ramasamy (Periyar) to remove evil practices from society and religion.
What our Constitution says? Preamble, Articles 14, 15, 17, 21, 25, 26, 27, 28, 44, 51A(h).
Religion and human rights Citizens or the people following such blind belief and faith on religion and practising so-called religious activities infringes forcefully the human right of others to live with dignity and status and even lives.
What the issue is? The practices which cause blatant violations of fundamental rights of common man are like branding women as witches, Sati, Female Genital Mutilation, black magic, gender discrimination, temple and mosque entry, self-flagellation, Impaling, Baby tossing, firewalking, etc.
What SC has held? Commissioner of Police v. Acharya Jagadishwarananda Avadhuta (2004)- essential part of a religion means the core beliefs upon which a religion is founded; Khursheed Ahmad Khan v. State of Uttar Pradesh– polygamy cannot be said to be an integral part or practice of any religion in India; Dr. M. Ismail Faruqui v. Union of India– offering of prayers at every location where it can be offered would not be an integral part of such religious practice; Animal Welfare Board of India v. A. Nagaraja, (2014)– conduct of Jallikattu or Bullock cart race; five-judge constitution bench has decided to refer the Sabarimala temple case, along with case of Muslim women’s entry into mosques, Female genital mutilation among Dawoodi Bohras and Entry of Parsi women married to non-Parsis in the Agyari , to a larger 7-judge Bench.
Various laws Karnataka Prevention and Eradication of Inhuman Evil Practices and Black Magic Bill, 2017; Assam Witch Hunting (Prohibition, Prevention and Protection) Bill, 2015; Rajasthan Prevention of Witch-hunting Bill, 2015; Kerala Exploitation by Superstition (Prevention) Act, 2014; Jharkhand Prevention of Witch (Daain) Practices Act, 2001; The Maharashtra Prevention and Eradication of Human Sacrifice and other Inhuman, Evil and Aghori Practices and Black Magic Act, 2013; The Commission of Sati (Prevention) Act, 1987; Karnataka Devadasi (Prohibition of Dedication) Act, 1982;Immoral Traffic Prevention Act, 1956; Bombay Devadasi Prohibition Act, 1934; Sati Pratha Regulation, 1829; Protection of Civil Rights Act, 1955.
Criticism of regulations The main allegation against the anti-superstitious laws is that they are anti-religious in effect; violation of Freedom of religion provided under our Constitution.
What can be done? Education and awareness; Uniform Civil Code; Sensitization; Cultural assimilation

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