MK Smotrich calls for investigation against Hashgacha Pratit

Jewish Home MK calls on State Prosecutor to investigate rabbinic group for 'encouraging lawbreaking.'

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Bezalel Smotrich
Bezalel Smotrich

On Thursday, Knesset Member Bezalel Smotritch (Jewish home) appealed to State Prosecutor Shai Nitzan and claimed that the Hashgacha Pratit (lit. "Private Supervision", the Hebrew term also denotes "Divine Providence") organization encourages lawbreaking.

Smotrich wrote to the state prosecutor: "In recent days, a video was published in which the heads of the private supervision organization preach the establishment of a marriage system that they claim will be 'for couples who care about Jewish ritual but are unwilling to marry under the Chief Rabbinate.' The organization offers a wedding ceremony, without registration."

"As is well known, according to the Marriage and Divorce Ordinance, the obligation to register marriages is imposed on the couple as well as on the marriage order and anyone who does not take care of it is sentenced to two years in prison," Smotrich wrote.

"In a state of laws, such blatant calls to break the law requires clarification by the legal authorities, so I will ask you to open an investigation into the matter and those involved," Smotrich concluded.

Rabbi Aharon Leibowitz, the head of the Hashgacha Pratit organization, responded to Smotrich's request.

"If MK Smotritch would devote a tenth of the time he spent on the persecution of the Hashgacha Pratit organization to attempting to correct the distortions and failures of the Chief Rabbinate of Israel, then perhaps our activity would not be needed at all. Since Smotrich chooses to fight for the preservation of the exclusivity of the rabbinate, instead of fighting for the quality of service that his voters receive from it, we have no choice but to challenge the rabbinate from the outside - and lead to deep and meaningful social reform," Rabbi Leibowitz said.

"Just as we were successful in the kashrut struggle, here too the activities of Hashgacha Pratit will be carried out within the framework of the law, and will lead to a better and more worthy reality for Israeli society. We will be happy to prove in court the legitimacy of our activity, and in the meantime, the public is invited to express its opinion on this matter and to support the headstart program to enable us to operate in the area of weddings," he added.