The Supreme Court yesterday freed Hadiya, 25, alleged to be a victim of 'love jihad', from the custody of her parents and sent her to college to pursue her studies, even as she pleaded that she should be allowed to go with her husband Shafin Jahan.
The father of the Kerala woman, at the centre of the alleged love jihad case, today welcomed the Supreme Court decision allowing her to continue her studies. Asked about his stance on inter-religious marriages, Hadiya’s father K M Ashokan said he believed in one religion and one god but could not have a terrorist in the family. “Hadiya does not have any idea about Syria, where she wanted to go after converting to Islam,” Ashokan said. “I cannot have a terrorist in the family,” he added. The Supreme Court yesterday freed Hadiya, 25, alleged to be a victim of ‘love jihad’, from the custody of her parents and sent her to college to pursue her studies, even as she pleaded that she should be allowed to go with her husband Shafin Jahan. “I was sad that she had to undergo all these unpleasant experiences because of which her studies were interrupted. But now I am happy as the court has allowed her to study further,” Ashokan told reporters.
He denied allegations that she had been kept under house arrest and added, “She was fully surrounded by police inside and outside the house.” Ashokan said he was not worried about her security in Salem, Tamil Nadu, as she was now under the protection and observation of the apex court. “I accept the Supreme Court’s decision. She is under the protection of the Supreme Court as it is monitoring the case and so I am not worried about her security,” he said. He also said he would go to Salem and meet her as and when necessary as the court had allowed him to do so. “The court has not given anyone guardianship, including Shafin Jahan, of my child,” Ashokan said, adding that only close relatives like him were allowed by the court.
Hadiya today left for Salem under the protection of Kerala Police and is expected to reach there by evening. The apex court, which yesterday interacted with Hadiya for nearly half-an-hour in the courtroom against the wishes of her father who had sought an in-camera interaction, had directed the Kerala police to provide her security and ensure that she travels at the earliest to Salem to pursue her homoeopathy studies at the Sivaraj Medical College there. Hadiya was in the custody of her parents for almost six months after the Kerala High Court had on May 29 anulled her ‘nikah’ with Shafin Jahan. Hadiya, a Hindu by birth, had converted to Islam several months before her marriage.