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Dalit openly become Christians, Buddhists to protest conversion law

Scores of low-caste people in southern India have converted to Christianity and Buddhism during a public event that organisers say was designed to protest a new law restricting religious conversion.

Fifty Hindu dalit (former untouchables) embraced Christianity, and another 36 became Buddhists on Friday at a public meeting in Solaiyur near the Tamil Nadu state capital of Chennai.

A confederation of low-caste groups planned the event with the All India Christian Council, an ecumenical lay association.

A law that penalises anyone who converts a dalit, tribal, woman or child through force or allurement took effect last Tuesday.

UCA News

Dalit Christians
Tamil Nadu Bishops object to conversions ordinance (10/10/02)
Indian Bishops defend mass conversion of Dalit to Buddhism (6/11/01)

11 Dec 2002