The Supreme Court on Monday directed that the 24-year-old woman Akhila alias Hadiya, a homoeopath, who converted to Islam after marrying her Muslim boyfriend Shafin Jehan, be brought before the court on November 27. The woman is presently in custody of her Hindu parents. After the Kerala High Court annulled their marriage saying this was a case of 'love jihad', the husband approached the apex court for relief.
The Supreme Court had earlier directed the National Investigation Agency to probe cases of 'love jihad' in Kerala. The NIA in its report said, of the 89 suspected cases of love jihad furnished by Kerala Police, it probed nine and found starting similarities in the matter of conversion of Hindu girls into Islam. The NIA said there was a well-oiled machinery at work involving outfits like Popular Front of India and Sathyasarani, which were playing a big role in converting and radicalizing young girls.
If one goes by the NIA, the matter has serious ramifications. Radicalizing young girls and sending them to work for Islamic State in the Middle East amounts to sedition, but it appears the NIA's counsel failed to convince the apex court. The Supreme Court said every adult woman had the right to decide whom she would like to marry and which religion to follow. The bench also remarked that there was no curb on a woman marrying a criminal.
In the past there had been similar cases. Convict Abu Salem married a woman while in jail, and nobody stopped him. But in the case of Akhila alias Hadiya, the issue is slightly different. The apex court had directed NIA to probe cases of 'love jihad', and it is necessary that the NIA finishes its probe into all these 89 cases, and convince the apex court about the radicalization issue.
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