SC restores Kerala woman’s marriage, quashes HC order

RSTV Bureau
File photo of Hadiya at the Supreme Court. PTI

File photo of Hadiya at the Supreme Court.
PTI

The Supreme Court has restored the marriage of Kerala-based woman, Hadiya, whose parents had alleged that she was a victim of forceful conversation and marriage. The Kerala High Court had last year annulled the marriage on the plea of her parents. That order of the High Court has now been set aside by the apex court.

A bench comprising Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices AM Khanwilkar and DY Chandrachud gave the verdict this afternoon in a packed courtroom.

Meanwhile, reacting to the verdict, Hadiya’s father Asokan said he will consider moving review petition against the Supreme Court order.

The matter came to the fore when Shafin Jahan, who claimed to be the husband of Hadiya, had challenged a Kerala High Court order annulling his marriage with her and sending the woman to her parents’ custody.

In the course of hearing, the Supreme Court had on February 22 questioned whether the high court could nullify a marriage between “vulnerable adults”. In an affidavit filed before the top court, Hadiya said that she had married Jahan on her own will and sought the court’s permission to “live as his wife”.

File photo of Shafin Jahan, husband of Hadiya at the Supreme Court, New Delhi on 27 November 2017. PTI

File photo of Shafin Jahan, husband of Hadiya at the Supreme Court, New Delhi on 27 November 2017.
PTI

She also claimed that her husband was wrongly portrayed as a terrorist by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) and he had nothing to do with the Middle East-based terror group ISIS.

On November 27 last year, the apex court had freed Hadiya from her parents’ custody and sent her to college to pursue her studies, even as she had pleaded that she should be allowed to go with her husband.

The high court had annulled the marriage terming it as an instance of ‘love jihad’, following which Jahan had approached the apex court.

Earlier this week, Hadiya’s father had filed an affidavit in the top court claiming that his daughter is a “vulnerable adult” and she “abjectly surrendered herself to complete strangers who adopted her into their fold, offering her shelter and protection and further imparted religious indoctrination in an isolated environment”.

He was responding to an affidavit filed by his daughter, who had earlier told the apex court that she had willingly converted to Islam and wanted to remain a Muslim.

(With inputs from PTI)