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Uttar Pradesh: Saqib became Sonu to entrap a minor Dalit girl, forced her to convert to Islam

This is second case registered under the anti-forced religious conversion laws in Bijnor and eighth in Uttar Pradesh

A case of Grooming Jihad has emerged from Bijnor in Uttar Pradesh where 19-year-old Saqib concealed his religious identity to entice a 14-year-old Dalit girl into forced religious conversion. As per reports, a case has been registered under the new UP Prohibition of Unlawful Conversion of Religion Ordinance 2020 and various sections of the IPC. A case has also been registered under the SC/ST Act.

As per the police, Mohd Saqib enticed the minor Dalit girl by pretending to be Sonu. They were allegedly in a ‘relationship’ for a year. On December 14, the duo decided to elope. They were apprehended by police when they reached Nahtaur. The police said that during interrogation, the girl said that Saqib hid his religious identity and had subsequently tried to force her to convert to Islam.

According to the girl’s parents, the girl used to study in a school in Dhampur and Saqib used to follow her after school hours. He lured her by pretending to be a Hindu, the father alleged.

This is second case registered under the anti-forced religious conversion laws in Bijnor and eighth in the state.

Saqib has been arrested and sent to jail. A case has been registered under Sections 363 (punishment for kidnapping), 366 (kidnapping, abducting or inducing a woman to compel her marriage) of the Indian Penal Code, provisions of POCSO (Protection of Children from Sexual Offences) Act, Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act and the new ordinance against forced and dishonest religious conversion.

The incident comes close on heels of another incident wherein a man had introduced himself as Sonu alias Bhure and worked as painter in Chandigarh. He befriended another man from Bijnor. Both returned to their native place on December 4 to attend a wedding. Here Sonu lured the daughter of his friend and eloped. The girl’s family got to know of his religious identity when they reached his home.

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