The police in Kochi resorted to lathicharge and tear gas shells on Monday against several Muslim groups, who laid siege to Banerji road in the city. They were protesting against a Kerala High Court order, nullifying the marriage of a Muslim man and a woman who had converted to Islam.
Days after the Kerala High Court nullified the marriage of Hadiya, who converted to Islam and got married to Shafin Jahan in December 2006, several Muslim organisations in the state took out a protest march in Kochi on Monday. A division bench of the court nullified the marriage based on a habeas corpus petition filed by her father, a native of Vaikom.
According to television reports, more than a hundred protesters belonging to various organisations including Muslim Ekopana Samiti, and various student groups took part in the protest.
While the agitators were carrying out a march to the High Court, they were stopped by the police at least a kilometer away from the court, near St Albert's College. They shouted slogans there for over half an hour, when the police lathicharged the protesters and used tear gas on them.
Undeterred by the lathicharge and the tear gas shells, the protesters continued to lay siege to Banerjee road for 20 minutes, following which they dispersed on their own.
Hadiya’s marriage was cancelled by the court after her father had alleged that his daughter was forcefully converted to Islam, Hadiya's father argued in court that there were efforts to recruit her to IS.
Read about the case in detail: Kerala HC cancels Muslim convert woman's wedding after father alleges ISIS recruitment plot
A day after the court order, Hadiya was forcefully taken away to her parents’ home in Vaikom from a hostel in Ernakulam where she was living.