The three-judge bench observed that similar petitions are pending before the Allahabad High Court and the Uttarakhand High Court.
New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Wednesday issued notices to Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh governments on pleas challenging laws against the so-called practice of ‘love jihad’ enacted by them.
The Apex court, however, refused to stay the provisions of the relevant law which required the prior permission of religious conversion for marriage.
A bench headed by Chief Justice Sharad Arvind Bobde and also comprising Justices V Ramasubramanian and AS Bopanna was hearing petitions challenging the love jihad ordinance in Uttar Pradesh and Freedom of Religion Act, 2018 in Uttarakhand.
Senior counsel Chander Udai Singh, appearing for Ms. Setalvad, argued that the laws were being misused to harass individuals indulging in interfaith marriages.
Advocate Vishal Thakre’s plea said that the laws are against the public policy and society at large and violate basic structure of the Constitution.
The petitioners further said, “This ordinance can become a potent tool in the hands of bad elements of the society to… falsely implicate anyone…there are probabilities to falsely implicate persons who are not involved in any such acts and it will be a grave injustice if this ordinance is passed.” They argued that the prior permission provisions of the laws are oppressive.
The bench told petitioners, “Can a law be stayed if prosecution is oppressive or false. This is the problem when you come directly to the Supreme Court.” Apex Court posted the next hearing after four weeks. The three-judge bench observed that similar petitions are pending before the Allahabad High Court and the Uttarakhand High Court.