After spending several days in a Kerala village, Mariam Khaliq is returning to her home in the UK, not knowing why her Malayali husband cheated her, ended all contact with her and married another woman
A British citizen, 33-year-old Mariam says she met her husband Kunnumbath Noushad Hussain (28) when he was a student in August 2011. Having met through Facebook, the couple developed a relationship and got their marriage registered in April 2013 in the UK.
In March 2014, Mariam says that Noushad left for his home in Chavakkad, Thrissur, after promising that he would convince his family to accept her, after which, they would get married according to religious rites. He also promised to take her to meet his parents once everything was sorted out.
However, some weeks later, Noushad stopped taking Khaliqâs calls, and did not respond to messages either. He also blocked her on WhatsApp and Facebook.
âI was blank. I couldnât think of a life without him. The only information I had about him was that his house was in Chavakkad, a photo of his house, and a number he used in Dubai earlier.â
The Dubai phone number helped Mariam to locate Noushadâs parents and she contacted them.
âThey behaved so badly to me. I pleaded, cried and begged them to give my husband back, but nobody listened to me,â Mariam told The News Minute.
A year after she began to look for ways to locate Noushad, Mariam stumbled upon Snehitha, a helpline and womenâs shelter run by a local Kudumbasree group. She also managed to contact Sudha Haridas and Mohammed Ismail her advocates, through the web.
It did not take long for the Kudumbasree group to locate Nousha.d Along with Kudumbasree activists, Sudha Haridasan visited Noushad.
âAlthough he first denied any relationship with Khaliq, Hussain later said that he married her just to get a permanent UK visa. He said that she was five years older than him and that he could not live with her,â Sudha told The News Minute.
It was after this, that Mariam first came to Thrissur in February to meet Hussain and get some answers. But by the time she was able to go to his house, Noushad had already left for Ajman, and all she got from his relatives, was abuse.
âThey called me a prostitute. They abused me very badly. I pleaded with them but they refused to talk to me.â
Under pressure from Kudumbasree activists and Sudha, Noushad was summoned from Ajman through a local politician and a meeting was arranged in the politicianâs house.
âI believed that when he met me, he would come to me, but it didnât happen,â Mariam said.
In front of everyone, Noushad said that Mariam was not even a girlfriend, let alone his wife. He also said that their relationship was limited to some time spent together in restaurants.
âWhen he said this, Mariam fainted. Noushad left when Mariam was still unconscious,â said Sudha.
The police also thwarted a first attempt by Noushad to get married, the marriage was called off.
Despite this, Mariam tried hard to get Noushad and his family to talk to her, but in vain. Ten days later, she returned to UK, determined not to give up.
Two weeks ago, she returned to India armed with an order from the Kunnamkulam Magistrate court, saying that her marriage with Noushad was legally valid and that she had the right to stay with Noushadâs family. The court also asked the local police to give her protection.
âI went to his house with the court order on October 16, but they shut their doors and did not even agree to talk to me,â she said, adding that she learned that Noushad had settled in Ajman.
Mariam also staged a sit-in protest in front of his house. In the meanwhile, photographs of Mariam partying with friends were circulating on WhatsApp, with people saying that she had âloose moralsâ and that she wanted his money.
Sudha says that these developments demoralised Mariam, but she was dissuaded from giving up.
They then learned that Noushad had got married in July to a girl from Alappuzha district.
âEven now I donât believe that his love was fake. He loved me sincerely when we were together in London. I know him very well, he doesnât have the courage to disobey others,â she said, adding that she believed he was under pressure from his family.
âThe other day I called him and he passed the phone to his wife. She laughed at me and abused me, which I could not tolerate,â she added.
Mariam says that Noushadâs parents have offered her Rs 8 lakh to leave India.
âI donât care about the compensation. He could at least have explained to me what happened instead of abusing me. I will come back after six months. I will fight. No woman should have such an experience,â she says.
(Repeated attempts to get in touch with Noushad went in vain).