Pledging full protection to minorities, Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Monday questioned the practice of conversions and advocated a debate on the need for an anti-conversion law.
He also wanted to know whether people cannot be served without indulging in conversions.
“There are sometimes rumours and controversies about ‘Ghar Wapsi’ and conversions. Why should there be any conversion at all?”
“In other countries it is the minorities which ask for anti-conversion law. Here, we are only saying that there should be an anti-conversion law. There should be debate over it. We must think on bringing anti-conversion law. I humbly request all of you to think over it,” Singh said.
He was addressing a conference of state minority commissions which was attended by representatives of various minority communities.
The Home Minister’s remarks on conversions assume significance in the midst of controversy over anti-conversion campaign undertaken by Hindutva organisations and comments by RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat regarding Mother Teresa.
“Why can’t we serve the people without doing conversion? Those who want to serve the people should do so without engaged with conversion. Can’t we find a solution to the problem”.
The Home Minister said he would like to request all state governments to take strongest possible action for the protection of minorities.
“I want to tell the whole country, even though law and order is a state subject, I will do everything for the protection of minority. I will go to any extent for this. I say this in the name of god,” he said.
The Home Minister also raised the issue of fear among certain sections about possible demographic change in the country and said the basic character of the country should not be allowed to change.
“If we go to the US and try to hurt the identity of that country, will they accept it? Why do we want to change their identity? There should not be any such attempt. How can a country like India allow changes in its demographic profile and character? Let India’s character remain the same,” he said.
Singh alleged that the sense of insecurity among the minorities prevailed during the rule of Congress-led UPA.
“If anyone can end the sense of insecurity among the minorities, it is the Narendra Modi-led NDA government. We have to turn the sense of insecurity into a sense of security. For a government or a Home Minister, ending insecurity of minorities is the biggest challenge,” he said.
The Home Minister expressed concern over the conflict between communities and said the trend should be stopped and the tendency to establish supremacy by one community over another should come to an end.
Singh said India is a country which respects all religions and believes in peaceful existence. Here all 72 sects of Islam live peacefully.
The Home Minister also said that no one can question the patriotism of minorities, even though some of them may feel alienated.
Singh said government is committed to give facilities to the minorities and to take up developmental projects for their welfare in the country.
“Some people may feel alienated. People may feel that proper development of the community is not taking place. For that we have to take appropriate action,” he said.