As many as two in three Indians are opposed to people marrying outside their faith, explains the survey conducted by Pew Research Centre.
The survey titled ‘Religion in India: Tolerance and Segregation’ involved 29,999 face-to-face interviews, from November 2019 to March 2020, with respondents spread across 26 states to explore the role of religion in public life in India. The survey reached out to most of the major faiths in India.
The Survey records that, 67 percent of respondents said that it is very important to them that inter-faith marriages of women belonging to their community be stopped, 65 percent said the same about men from their community.
However, there are community-wise differences.
According to the survey, 67 percent Hindus, 80 percent Muslims, 59 percent Sikhs, and 66 percent Jains said that women should be stopped from marrying outside their community.
Regarding men, 65 percent Hindus, 76 percent Muslims, 58 percent Sikhs, and 59 percent Jains said that men should be stopped from marrying outside their community.
However, Christians and Buddhists responded differently from other communities. Among Christians, 37 percent said that women should be stopped from marrying outside the community, while 35 percent said the same about men. Among Buddhists, the corresponding figure was 46 percent and 44 percent for women and men respectively.
Very few Indians surveyed said that they are married to someone who currently follows a different religion than their own.
Indeed, nearly all married people (99 percent) report that their spouse shares their religion. This includes nearly universal shares of Hindus (99 percent), Muslims (98 percent), Christians (95 percent), Sikhs, and Buddhists (97 percent).
According to the survey, the opposition to inter-caste marriages was only marginally less than for inter-faith marriages. 62 percent men and 64 percent women across communities said that it is very important to stop people from marrying outside their caste.