Indian state outlaws religious conversion by marriage

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India’s ruling Hindu nationalist party has approved legislation in the country’s most populous state that lays out a prison term of up to 10 years for anyone found guilty of using marriage to force someone to change religion.

The decree for the state of Uttar Pradesh was passed Tuesday and follows a campaign by Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Hindu-nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party against interfaith marriages. The party describes such marriages as “love jihad,” an unproven conspiracy theory used by its leaders and Hindu hard-line groups to accuse Muslim men of converting Hindu women by marriage.