UTJ MKs Moshe Gafni, Yitzchak Pindrus and Yaakov Asher on Monday night submitted a bill related to religion, causing a furor among opposition MKs, who immediately began complaining about “religious coercion.”
The bill states: “Chag HaPesach, known by its Biblical name Chag HaMatzos, is the chag that symbolizes the birth of the Jewish people during which they emerged from slavery to freedom. According to surveys and studies carried out in Israel, Chag HaPesach is considered the most important of Israel’s chagim among all sectors of the population, with the vast majority of the Jewish people celebrating Chag HaPesach and observing the prohibition of eating chometz on Pesach – religious, traditional and secular.
“Contrary to dinei kashrus throughout the year, the prohibition of eating chometz on Chag HaPesach is extremely strict and the dinei kashrus on Pesach are also extremely strict – as chometz on Pesach is not ‘battul b’shishim’ – so chometz eaten in a kli even in a very small amount – may result in the keilim becoming non-kosher in a way that prevents shomrei kashrus from eating from these keilim. In addition, there is a special prohibition on Pesach of ‘it shouldn’t be seen or found.'”
In the bill, Gafni mentions the Supreme Court ruling at the end of April 2020 “contrary to the status quo that prevailed for decades”, which ruled that hospitals lack the legal authority to ban the entry of chometz, and notes that this ruling may result in the majority of Israeli citizens not being able to receive medical treatment during Pesach.
“It is proposed to establish a ban on the possession or entry of chometz on Pesach in hospitals,” the bill reads, “This provision will not apply to hospitals in the non-Jewish sector that do not hold a teudas kashrus all year round.”
The first to comment on the bill was opposition leader Yair Lapid who said that “this government has decided that it will do everything to cause an irreparable rift in Israeli society and turn Judaism into religious coercion.”
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)