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    High Court declares that giving Bible is not an attempt to convert

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    Distributing the Holy Bible and teaching good values cannot be considered as a way to entice people to convert to Christianity, according to the Allahabad high court. The court also stated that strangers cannot file FIRs under the Uttar Pradesh Prohibition of Unlawful Conversion of Religion Act. As a result, two individuals who were accused of persuading people from the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe communities to convert to Christianity were granted bail.

    The bail pleas of Jose Papachen and Sheeja were initially rejected, leading them to be sent to jail. The police had registered an FIR based on a complaint filed by a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) member in Ambedkar Nagar district on January 24. The BJP leader accused the two individuals of enticing people from marginalized communities to convert their religion.

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    Justice Shamim Ahmad, presiding over the case, issued an observation stating that providing education, distributing the Holy Bible, organizing village assemblies, promoting peaceful interactions, and discouraging alcohol consumption do not qualify as enticement under the 2021 act.

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