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Jain practice of death by starvation illegal: Rajasthan HC

The Rajasthan high court gave its judgement on Monday against the controversial Jain practice, Santhara or Sallekhana, in which a person gives up water and food till death by starvation. The court said that the practice was illegal  and equal to suicide and directed FIRs to be filed against persons undertaking this practice.

Angry reactions from the Jain community were received where Jain studies scholar Manish Modi said, "It is deeply disappointing to hear of this judgement. Santhara or Sallekhana is an integral practice, custom and tradition of the Jain religion and has been so for the past thousands of years."

Despite its historical and religious significance, Santhara has been opposed by activists, citing abuse and coercion.

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