UP anti-conversion law: man gets 5 years in prison on first conviction

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A court in Amroha in Uttar Pradesh has served a five-year prison sentence against a 26-year-old carpenter under the state’s anti-conversion law, which was introduced in December 2021. This is the first case of conviction under the Uttar Pradesh Prohibition of Unlawful Religion Conversion Act, 2021.

Additional Director-General of Police Prosecutor, Ashutosh Pandey, confirmed that since the introduction of the new law in December 2021, the Amroha District Court’s conviction was the first under the new law.

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Amroha Additional District Judge (POCSO Court), Kapila Raghav, on Saturday announced a five-year sentence for Afzal and fined Rs 40,000.

Gajendra Pal Singh, an investigative officer at the Hasanpur Police Station, said Amroha Police had arrested Afzal from Delhi on April 4, 2021 and arrested him under the Uttar Pradesh Anti-Conversion Act for allegedly kidnapping a 16-year-old girl from another community.

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The girl’s father, who ran a plant nursery, claimed that his daughter had left the house to work, but did not return. He had also told police that two local residents had seen her with a boy.

The girl’s family had told police they knew the girl was in regular contact with Afzal, who was visiting her father’s nursery to buy plants.

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The police then filed a case against Afzal, accusing him of kidnapping and invoking the anti-conversion law.

(With input from IANS)

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