Hadiya case: SC to examine if HC can annul marriage

Kerala'love Jihad case SC denies Hadiya's custody to father will check if High Court can annul marriage

"The question is whether an HC on an Article 226 petition can annul the marriage", Chief Justice of India Dipak Mishra asked while hearing a petition filed by a Kerala man - Shefin Jahan - whose marriage to a Hindu girl Akhila after she converted to Islam and took the name Hadiya was set aside by the High Court.

The apex court asked how the father of the girl could question the rights of a girl who was 24 years old.

On Tuesday Supreme Court stated on Kerala Love Jihad case that father can not dictate the personal life of 24-year-old while hearing the plea of Shafin Jahan from Kerala.

The court would now hear the case on October 9.

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Senior Advocate Dushyant Dave, appearing for Jahan, argued that in a multi-religious society the apex court should not have ordered NIA investigation in the case and urged for an urgent hearing on the plea seeking recall of the order.

The Kerala HC on May 25 had declared as "null and void", the marriage of 24-year-old Hadiya who was allegedly forced to convert to Islam after being abducted and wrongfully confined in Kerala's Malappuraman district. "Women are not being viewed as individuals who have political choices", she said.

The Supreme Court today wondered if a high court could annul a marriage between two adults while hearing a writ petition under Article 226 of the Constitution. She has also confessed in the video, "ask my father and mother, whether they torture and abuse me for following my religion and its practices".

Raising his voice, Dave said the apex court had exceeded jurisdiction and must recall order. The bench said: "Either we will appoint loco parentis or we will send her somewhere safe". Will Your Lordships order NIA probe into it?

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The top court had on August 16 directed the National Investigation Agency (NIA) to probe the incident under the supervision of retired apex court judge, Justice R V Raveendran.

The woman, a Hindu, had converted to Islam and later married Jahan.

On a petition filed by Akhila's father KM Ashokan, the Kerala High Court had annulled the marriage and handed over her custody to him.

It was alleged that the woman was recruited by Islamic State's mission in Syria and Jahan was only a stooge.

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