Daily US Times: A survey from Pew Research Center has found that most Indians see themselves and their country as religiously tolerant but are against interfaith marriage.
People across different faiths in India said stopping interfaith marriage was a “high priority” for them.
The research comes after laws were introduced in several states in India criminalising interfaith love.
Pew interviewed 30,000 people across the country in 17 languages for the study.
The interviewees were from three federally administered territories and 26 states.
According to the survey, 80% of the Muslims who were interviewed said that it was important to stop people from their community from marrying into another religion while around 65% of Hindus felt the same.
The survey also asked about the relationship between nationality and faith. The survey found that Hindus “tend to see their religious identity and Indian national identity as closely intertwined”.
64% of Hindus said it was very important to be Hindu in order to be “truly Indian”.
The study found that despite sharing certain religious beliefs and values, members of India’s major religious communities “often don’t feel they have much in common”.
The study said: “Indians simultaneously express enthusiasm for religious tolerance and a consistent preference for keeping their religious communities in segregated spheres – they live together separately.”
It added that many lead religiously segregated lives, when it comes to friendships, and “would prefer to keep people of certain religions out of their residential areas or village”.