With Haryana’s BJP-JJP government planning to bring a Bill on “love jihad” in the upcoming Budget Session of the Assembly, an RTI query has revealed that only four cases were registered over similar charges in six districts of the state over the last three years. Two cases were cancelled by the police after a probe, while the accused in the third case was acquitted by the court. The fourth case is pending before a court.
According to the information procured from police officials by RTI activist P P Kapoor, no case of “love jihad” was reported from three districts Hisar, Faridabad and Yamunanagar over the past three years. “A case lodged in Punhana police station of Mewat area on December 12, 2020 was cancelled after the police inquiry,” says Kapoor. Similarly, a case lodged in Ambala district has also been cancelled after a police probe while the accused in another case in the same district has been acquitted by the court. A case lodged in Samalkha police station of Panipat district on July 19, 2019 is still pending in court.
Kapoor said he sought information from district officials of Nuh (Mewat), Yamunanagar, Faridabad, Hisar, Panipat and Ambala, which have a considerable Muslim population. He specifically sought information regarding complaints and FIRs related to the cases of “love jihad”.
Haryana Home Minister Anil Vij had earlier announced a strict law will be enacted to control “love jihad” cases in the state. When contacted on Wednesday, Vij did not respond to a text message and a phone call.
Kapoor says he had sought the figures regarding cases of love jihad from state police headquarters too three months back but is yet to receive a response.
On this, a senior police officer said, “The police don’t have any data (at state level) on love jihad. Love jihad is a term coined by the politicians and media. So, the police, except in the cases involving atrocities on SC/STs, don’t maintain data according to the religion of the victim and the accused. For us, a crime is a crime. Since, love jihad is not defined in the IPC, how can we tell how many such cases took place.”
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