Chitradurga: In an unprecedented incident in Karnataka, a minor boy and his father are facing charges under the recently enacted Karnataka Protection of Right to Freedom of Religion Act 2022, commonly referred to as the anti-conversion law. The allegations involve the purported conversion of the minor boy’s classmate to Islam.
The incident took place in Parashurampura, located in Chitradurga district, approximately 236 km from Bengaluru. The case was registered based on a complaint filed on October 29 by the father of another minor boy, belonging to the Kuruba community. Both the accused and the complainant’s son are 17 years old.
The complainant became suspicious of his son’s behavior, a pre-university college student in Challakere taluk, when the boy ceased Hindu rituals such as pooja and worship. Furthermore, the son declined to participate in Dasara celebrations, according to the complaint.
The father, upon inspecting his son’s belongings, discovered photos depicting his son engaged in namaz (Islamic prayer) and skull caps. Upon inquiry, it was alleged that the accused minor and his father had taken the complainant’s son to mosques in various towns within Chitradurga district, converting him to Islam without consent. Additionally, the complainant found written materials related to Islam in his son’s bag. A search of the son’s mobile phone reportedly revealed conversations related to drugs and ganja.
The accused minor’s father, who operates a cycle repair shop, was acquainted with the complainant’s family. No arrests have been made at this point, but statements have been gathered from both parties, according to a police officer.
The case has been registered under section 5 of the 2022 Act, which prohibits conversion from one religion to another through misrepresentation, force, fraud, undue influence, coercion, allurement, or the promise of marriage. Chitradurga SP Dharmendra Kumar Meena informed reporters that detailed information is being collected from both the victim and the accused as part of the ongoing investigation.