Supreme Court upholds marriage in alleged case of "Love Jihad"

Hannah Rogers
March 9, 2018

The Supreme Court in India has ruled that an Indian woman who has been embroiled in an inter-religious marriage row may now live with her husband.

Supreme Court on Thursday restored Hadiya's marriage and set aside the Kerala High Court order which had annulled marriage.

The Bench headed by Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra said, "Whether this marriage is a disguise (to commit crime) is a separate issue".

The order of the Supreme Court was passed on an appeal filed by Jahan who had challenged the order of the Kerala High Court which had annulled the marriage while terming it as a sham. "We can't stand in the (their) way", said Justice D Y Chandrachud as senior counsel Shyam Divan justified the Kerala High Court annulling Hadiya's marriage.

Asokan said he would also consider filing a review petition in connection with the apex court order.

Hadiya, born Akhila and a Hindu, converted to Islam in January 2016 and married Jahan in December of the same year.

26 of marriage party die in road accident in Gujarat
The accident happened in Bhavnagar district, about 200 kilometers from the state capital Ahmedabad. Those killed included the groom's parents, besides two dozen others heading to the wedding party .

The Supreme Court indicated that it would re-consider its earlier decision to order a probe by the NIA into the "love jihad" controversy and said prima facie it was of the view that the father can not hold custody of his 24-year-old girl.

But the court said the National Investigation Agency (NIA) would continue its probe into the criminal dimension of the case, if any.

"When I filed the habeas corpus at the court, my daughter was not married".

Feb 22: SC questions whether the HC could nullify a marriage and if a roving inquiry could be ordered into the issue of consent between two adults to marry.

Oct 30: SC asks Hadiya's father to produce her on November 27. Hadiya, in her affidavit, also stated that she wanted to remain as the wife of Safin Jahan.

Hadiya's father, KM Ashokan, has refused to give up, and cited the NIA continuing the probe as proof that the investigative body thinks Shafin Jahan is a terrorist. Her family, however, didn't allow her to live with him.

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