SC on Kerala love jihad case

Supreme Court asks if Kerala High Court exceeded its reach in alleged 'Love Jihad case'

While hearing a plea of Shafin Jahan from Kerala, the Supreme Court on 3rd October said that a father can not dictate the personal life of a 24-year-old daughter.

The court would now hear the case on October 9.

Shafin Jahan, has filed an another plea in SC challenging the HC order saying it was an "an insult to the independence of woman in India".

The apex court then intervened and asked the NIA to probe the marriage after doubts were raised as this was a case of "love jihad".

Hadiya case: SC to examine if HC can annul marriage
It was alleged that the woman was recruited by Islamic State's mission in Syria and Jahan was only a stooge. The apex court asked how the father of the girl could question the rights of a girl who was 24 years old.

Appearing for Jahan on Tuesday, senior counsel Dushyant Dave vociferously contested the order for NIA probe saying "it struck at the very foundation of this multi-religious society" and was "sending bad signals across the world".

Born Akhila Ashokan, Hadiya had converted to Islam before her marriage to Shafin Jahan.

The Bench also sought to know if Akhila, an adult, could be kept in her father's custody against her will.

"Pattern or no pattern, the question is, can the high court annul the marriage by exercising its powers under Article 226 of the constitution", the bench held. Jahan is seeking recall of the order for an NIA probe.

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The Kerala HC had nullified their marriage calling it a "sham" in May this year, after Hadiya's father approached the court alleging that there were efforts to take her to Syria to join an Islamic extremist outfit. 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".

The NIA's preliminary report submitted to the top court had hunted that it did not appear to be an isolated case and required further investigation.

He said despite Justice Raveendran declining to supervise the probe, the NIA was preceding with the investigation and it was reported that the NIA has already found a "link". "Your Lordships have gone beyond the jurisdiction and expanded the proceedings by ordering NIA probe".

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

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Commission chairperson M.C. Josephine said the Supreme Court's observations in the case on Tuesday was a stark reminder that protection should not impede on the individual rights of any citizen.

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