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Home > Know Your Rights > Right to Freedom of Religion
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Legal Framework

·  Article 25 of the Constitution of India gives freedom of conscience and freedom to profess, practice and propagate any religion subject of course to public order, morality and health. It states that:

 

“(1)Subject to public order, morality and health and to the other provisions of this Part, all persons are equally entitled to freedom of conscience and the right freely to profess, practice and propagate religion.

 

(2) Nothing in this article shall affect the operation of any existing law or prevent the State from making any law-

 

(a)Regulating or restricting any economic, financial, political or other secular activity which may be associated with religious practice;

(b)Providing for social welfare and reform or the throwing open of Hindu religious institutions of a public character to all classes and sections of Hindus.

 

Explanation I.The wearing and carrying of kirpans shall be deemed to be included in the professing of the Sikh religion.

Explanation II. In sub-clause (b) of clause (2), the reference to Hindus shall be construed as including a reference to persons professing the Sikh, Jaina or Buddhist religion, and the reference to Hindu religious institutions shall be construed accordingly.”

 

·  Article 26 of the Constitution of India grants every citizen the right to establish and maintain institutions for religious and charitable purposes, to manage its own affairs in matters of religion, to own and acquire movable and immovable property and to administer such property in accordance with law. It states that:

 

Subject to public order, morality and health, every religious denomination or any section thereof shall have the right-

(a) To establish and maintain institutions for religious and charitable purposes;

(b) To manage its own affairs in matters of religion;

(c) To own and acquire movable and immovable property; and

(d) To administer such property in accordance with law.”

 

·  Article 27 of the Constitution of India states that:

 

"No person shall be compelled to pay any taxes, the proceeds of which are specifically appropriated in payment of expenses for the promotion or maintenance of any particular religion or religious denomination".

 

·  Article 28 of the Constitution of India states  that: 

 

“(1)No religious instruction shall be provided in any educational institution wholly maintained out of State funds.

 

(2)Nothing in clause (1) shall apply to an educational institution, which is administered by the State but has been established under any endowment or trust which requires that religious instruction shall be imparted in such institution.

 

(3)No person attending any educational institution recognized by the State or receiving aid out of State funds shall be required to take part in any religious instruction that may be imparted in such institution or to attend any religious worship that may be conducted in such institution or in any premises attached thereto unless such person or, if such person is a minor, his guardian has given his consent thereto.

 

·  By the 42nd Amendment Act, 1976, the word "secularism" was inserted in the Preamble of the Constitution of India to give more emphasis on the Right to religious freedom and secular character of the India state.

 
 
 
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