Kozhikode On her first visit to her home state Kerala after the Indian Supreme Court upheld her marriage with Shafin Jahan, Hadiya on Saturday said "all this happened as I embraced Islam".
"The Constitution gives all the freedom to choose their religion, which is a fundamental right of every citizen and all this happened because I embraced Islam," said Hadiya while interacting with the media. Hadiya and her husband arrived here on Saturday from the southern Indian city of Salem and drove to the office of the Popular Front of India (PFI) where she briefly interacted with reporters. "With the Supreme Court upholding our marriage, we feel we have got freedom," Hadiya said here. The top court on March 8 set aside an order of the Kerala High Court that annulled their marriage.
Hadiya, 24, earlier Akhila Ashokan, embraced Islam and married Shafin Jahan, a Muslim. Hadiya's father alleged that she was forcibly converted by groups with links to terrorist outfits. "It was only the PFI that supported us all through our troubled times and what's more surprising is that two Muslim organizations whom we approached refused to help us," added Hadiya who will be in Kerala for three more days before returning to Salem in Tamil Nadu where she is studying.
The Supreme Court on Thursday set aside a Kerala High Court order that annulled the marriage of Akhila Asokan alias Hadiya with Shafin Jahan, which was termed as an instance of 'love jihad'. A three-judge Bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra said the high court should not have annulled the marriage. The Bench based its order on the statement made by Hadiya who had appeared before it in November last year and clearly stated that she married Jahan on her own volition and without any pressure.
Hadiya is free to pursue her future endeavors in life as per law, said the Bench, which also included Justice AM Khanwilkar and Justice DY Chandrachud.
The Bench, however, made it clear that the National Investigation Agency (NIA) probe into the suspected larger conspiracy of systematic religious conversation for 'love jihad' funded by foreign agencies would continue.
Following the Supreme Court verdict setting aside Kerala high court order that annulled her marriage, an elated Hadiya requested her parents to accept her husband Shafin Jahan as their son-in-law. My husband called me from Delhi to inform that the Supreme Court had pronounced our marriage was legal and valid, Hadiya said. I was overwhelmed with joy and happiness when my husband informed about the verdict, she said. My husband also expressed his happiness saying that we have succeeded in the case, Hadiya said. Hadiya, who was at the center of controversial 'Love Jihad' case, has been continuing her internship in a private homoeopathy medical college and research institute near Sivadhapuram in Salem district. Shafin Jahan approached the Supreme Court challenging the Kerala high court order.
Hadiya said she wished to start a happy life with Shafin Jahan in Kerala after completing her internship successfully. Right now, he is working in a private company in Kollam. We don't have any idea about our future but wish to live only in Kerala especially in Kollam, she said.
Hadiya said, I don't want to disown my parents before and after these issues. I wished to live with them and my husband. She requested her parents to accept Shafin Jahan as their son-in-law. I am just waiting for the last day of my internship. I wished to go Kerala once I complete my studies, she added.
Source: International Islamic News Agency