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Conversions to Religions in India

Conversions to Religions in India

India has been a country open to diverse cultures and religions since time immemorial, and conversion from one religion to another remained common phenomenon since thousands of years. Hindus converted to Buddhism during the time of Ashoka (304 BC- 232 BC.), as well as to the Islamic and Christian culture after they came to know them. However, the conversion was an easy matter in the old but now it is on the contrary, it is really complicated and difficult, yet the phenomenon of conversion exists in India though it is rare, as we will discuss in these lines.

Mankind is an intellectually, mentally and philosophically developing being continuously, and thus the movement from one religion to another is an inherent.

As many as 44 per cent people (749 out of 1,687) chose to embrace Islam in the last 43 months. This report came as a reply to an RTI (Right to Information Act) query and revealed the conversion statistics.

From 1,166 Hindus, 664 converted to Islam, followed by Buddhism (258), Christianity (138), Jainism (88), Sikhism (11) and other religions (7).

According to RTI report, around 44% (749 out of the total 1,687) embraced Islam, while only 21% people converted to Hinduism.

The information was provided by the Directorate of Government Printing and Stationery (DGPS), Mumbai in response to a query filed by an activist.

“As per the information recorded between June 10, 2014 and January 16, 2018, around 44 per cent (749 out of the total 1,687) embraced Islam, while only 21 per cent people converted to Hinduism,” it said.

It was also said in the report that total 263 Muslims changed their religion, of which 228 people (87 per cent) chose to become Hindu, while 12 embraced Buddhism, 21 Christianity and two converted to Jainism.

In addition, from the 16 Sikhs who changed their religion, 12 embraced Islam, and two each adopted Christianity and Jainism.

“These are the numbers recorded by the DGPS. It only maintains the record of the people who report to it. Otherwise, the actual number of people, who change their religion, is quite high.” as the activist has said.

When contacted, a senior official from the directorate said, “We have launched an online facility so that people can inform about change in religion. For those who are not much tech-savvy, we have 4,000 centers across the state, where they can inform us about their conversions.”

It is clear that Islam has the greatest share of these conversions, and that is because Islam is plain and clear in its doctrine, law, transactions and moral values. Moreover, most of those who convert to Islam embrace it after careful study, full understanding and serious reading. Also, in the converts to Islam we find that they are educated, learned and highly qualified, and they embrace Islam faithfully away from physical or financial greed.

As for those who left Islam and converted to another religion, as stated in the report, are simple people, uneducated and in extreme poverty, so they change the religion motivated and driven by material or financial greed. It is rare for an educated, learned, wealthy, wise Muslim to leave his religion, and embrace another religion.

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