Archive for November 2nd, 2009

November 2, 2009

Anti-Apostasy Law by the State of Bhopal, 1920

by Sarvesh K Tiwari

Copy of ‘Jaridah’ dated 7th July 1920, of Resolution No. 17, dated 5th July 1920:

Her Highness the Ruler of Bhopal has been pleased to order that, in pursuance of section 300 of the Shahjehani Penal Code, Rule No. 1, 1912, that is in the Compiled Penal Code of Bhopal, section 393, after section 393 A, the following be added, which after the date of publication will be in force and enforced:

Section 393A: Any person renouncing his faith after once embracing Islam shall be liable to be sentenced to punishment of either description extending to three years’ imprisonment or to fine, or both.

This order is published for general information and observance.

By Orders of Her Highness Sikander Saulat, Iftikhar ul-Mulk, Nawab Dame Sultan Kaikhusrau Jahan Begum Sahiba, Nawab Begum of Dar ul-Iqbal-i-Bhopal, GCSI, GCIE, CI, GBE, KIH.

The above order was issued by the Begum Sahiba in immediate reaction to the success of Shuddhi movement of Arya Samaj. 

In the same year when Begum Sahiba signed the above order, she was also appointed the Founding Chancellor of the Aligarh Muslim University, in recognition of the financial and other contributions to its founding by her state, and she remained in the honorary post till her death in 1930.  These days, she is paraded by seculars as a modernist Moslem woman of her time, and an icon of Progressivism.  All her principal relatives migrated to Pakistan after partition, except for one grand-daughter who was married to the Nawab of Pataudi, and gave birth to Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi.

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