Will act against forceful conversions: Tripura CM

Agartala, Dec 29 (IANS) Tripura’s Left Front government would not tolerate any forceful religious conversions and would take strict action against any such move, Chief Minister Manik Sarkar said Monday.

“The government would not tolerate any kind of forceful religious conversions in the state. We would take strict legal and administrative actions against forceful conversions,” Sarkar said at a public meeting in Dhali district.
He said: “Hindus, Muslims, Christians, Buddhists and Jains are living together for decades in Tripura and there is absolutely no problems. The situation would continue in future too without any difficulties.”
Sarkar, a politburo member of the Communist Party of India-Marxist, said if anyone was trying to upset the communal harmony in the state, the government would deal this with all out efforts.
“Religion is an individual affair and right. But the RSS (Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh) chief Mohan Bhagwat said that if anyone wants to live in India, he should live as a Hindu,” Sarkar said, adding this was “dangerous”.
The chief minister said: “I have read Quran, Gita, Bible and Tripitok, nowhere told anything against each other, neither said about forceful conversions. The RSS and the BJP (Bharatiya Janata Party) are trying forceful conversion.”
“In the villages of Uttar Pradesh, people are being converted without their knowledge.”
Sarkar said when the opposition parties in parliament asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi to give statement about the “forceful” religious conversions in different parts of the country, Modi kept mum and indirectly supported the move.
The CPI-M leader asked the people to agitate against both the religious and economic attacks of the BJP-led central government.
Ahead of four-day CPI-M’s 21st state conference scheduled Feb 25-28t here, Sarkar has been attending divisional committee conferences and addressing the public gathering, especially in tribal dominated areas.
The politically important election to Tripura Tribal Areas Autonomous District Council (TTAADC) is also scheduled mid next year.
Various tribal parties ahead of the TTAADC polls have been raising various sensitive demands, including creation of a separate state curving out of the autonomous district council areas.
According to BJP’s Tripura unit president Sudhindra Dasgupta, around 13 percent of the tribals, traditionally Hindu believers, have been converted into Christian over past decade.
Tribals constitute a third of Tripura’s 3.7 million people.