SC restores Hadiya's marriage, OKs probe

10 March, 2018, 01:53 | Author: Bert Pena
  • V Muraleedharan

The Supreme Court has finally ended what the Kerala high court wrought when it declared her marriage to a Muslim man null and void, on the basis of a complaint from her father who alleged that she was being "forcefully converted to Islam".

It was during the hearing of this case, where Supreme Court had asked the National Investigation Agency to investigate what the Kerala High Court has observed about the conversions and marriages by organizations while asking Hadiya about her opinion on her marriage with Shefin Jahan. At long last, the Supreme Court has ended the sham that deprived Hadiya of her liberties. Reacting to the verdict of the Supreme Court, Asokan said that he would consider filing a review petition.

The top court also called Hadiya to listen to her views and the girl told the judges that she embraced Islam and married Shefin Jahan on her own free will.

Meanwhile, the SC also said that the NIA probe on the allegation of Shefin Jahan having terrorist links may continue.

The agency is probing charges of the so-called "love jihad" - an alleged conspiracy to lure Hindu girls into conversion and marriage with Muslims and send them to join terrorist outfits like the Islamic State - in relation to inter-religious marriages in Kerala like Hadiya's.

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"We clarify that the investigation by the NIA in respect of any matter of criminality may continue in accordance with law", the court said. Significantly, the HC had also directed "comprehensive" investigation into cases of "love jihad" and has incidents of forced conversion probed thoroughly. I will try and convince the court about it once again, he said.

Pronouncing a brief operative order after lunch, Chief Justice Misra said the High Court should not have annulled the marriage between the two, following a Habeas Corpus petition, by exercising its powers under Article 226 of the Constitution. We still maintain the marriage was stage-managed. Shafin had challenged the HC order in the top court demanding his reunion with Hadiya.

Justice Chandrachud, however, said that "the moment we step into the realm of public law, we are stepping into a unsafe domain".

Additional Solicitor General Maninder Singh, appearing for the NIA, claimed that "marriage" in this case "was a disguise to further an offence".



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SC restores Hadiya's marriage
The court refused her permission to live with Shefin and asked the police to investigate all the facts of the marriage. The probe into the cases of Love Jihad by a well oiled network in Kerala would however continue, the Bench said.

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