Five years ago, Nepal abolished Hinduism as its state religion.
Now, it’s working on a new criminal code that would forbid a person of one faith to “convert a person or abet him to change his religion,” reports Compass Direct News.
Article 160 of the proposed code also says no one will be allowed to do anything or behave in any way that could cause a person from a caste, community or creed to lose faith in his/her traditional religion or convert to a different religion. The proposal would also prohibit conversion “by offering inducements or without inducement,” and preaching “a different religion or faith with any other intent.”
Offenders could be imprisoned for a maximum of five years and fined up to $685 CAD. If the offender is a foreigner, he or she would be deported within seven days of completing the sentence.
The bill, which would make proclaiming Christ a punishable offense, was approved by the Council of Ministers and then introduced in parliament on May 15 by Law and Justice Minister Prabhu Shah.
In the meantime, Nepal continues to operate without a constitution due to a protracted battle for political power. The current prime minister has admitted his three-month-old government had failed to fulfill its mandate and instead sought another year to write the constitution.
Amid the delays, Hindu militancy is on the upswing, reports Compass Direct.
Continue to pray for Nepalese believers. Pray the government will acknowledge religious freedom for all.