NIA probe not fair, Hadiya should not be confined at home: Shafin Jahan appeals to SC

Shafin’s petition said the NIA probe into Hadiya’s case went against SC orders, since the retired judge appointed to oversee it had refused.
NIA probe not fair, Hadiya should not be confined at home: Shafin Jahan appeals to SC
NIA probe not fair, Hadiya should not be confined at home: Shafin Jahan appeals to SC
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Shafin Jahan, whose marriage to a Kerala woman named Hadiya and her conversion to Islam are being investigated by the NIA, has asked the Supreme Court to stop the probe.

Shafin’s marriage to Hadiya was annulled by the Kerala High Court in May this year, and Hadiya has been under house arrest in Vaikkom in Kottayam ever since. The Supreme Court, hearing an appeal by Shafin, had directed the NIA to investigate into the issue.

According to reports, Shafin’s appeal states that the NIA probe contravenes the orders of the Supreme Court, since the retired Justice that the apex court had appointed to oversee the investigation had declined the position. Pointing out a Times of India report of August 28 that claimed the NIA had found a ‘link’ among many cases of ‘love jihad’, Shafin’s petition contended that the NIA could not go ahead with the probe without Justice RV Raveendran’s oversight.

“That, the same is in clear violation of this Hon’ble Court’s order as the investigation was to be overseen by Justice Raveendran and that without his supervision, the same cannot be undertaken and be said to be fair,” Bar and Bench quoted the petition as stating.

Shafin’s petition also argued that Hadiya’s confinement in her parental home cannot be allowed as it is against her consent.

As evidence of this claim, Shafin’s petition cited a video by activist Rahul Easwar, in which Hadiya protested her house arrest, as well as statements from others including Acting President of the State Human Rights Commission and a member of  the Kerala  Women’s Commission that Hadiya’s confinement violated her human rights.

Speaking to TNM, Shafin said that he had filed the petition against the NIA probe because Hadiya’s  confinement was getting prolonged much further due to it.

"We have given a petition because we are deeply concerned over the delay in the case. The NIA inquiries are further delaying the case. Yesterday, some women went to meet Hadiya but they were not allowed to do so. How long will it go on this way?" Shafin asked.

Hadiya’s case came to the attention of the Kerala High Court in 2016, when her father filed a petition alleging that Hadiya, who went by the name Akhila before her conversion, had been forcibly converted to Islam, and that there were plans to recruit her into the extremist organisation ISIS.

While the court had initially accepted Hadiya’s statement that she had converted to Islam of her own free will, it had later called Hadiya’s December 2016 marriage to Shafin a ‘sham’, and annulled  it. The court also returned Hadiya to her parental home, and directed that the family be given police protection. Hadiya has been confined in the home ever since. The case came to the Supreme Court following an appeal by Shafin against the HC order.  

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