NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Thursday asked the Kerala police to hand over records pertaining to an alleged ‘Love Jihad’ case to National Investigation Agency (NIA) for unbiased investigation.
The case relates to the alleged conversion and radicalization of a Hindu girl and her marriage to a Muslim. A bench led by Chief Justice of India JS Khehar made it clear that “it wants to get the whole picture for assessing the ramifications of the case.”
“If there are issues going beyond the purview of Kerala or is part of a radicalisation trend in the southern states which is threatening national security, they (NIA) should be able to assist us,” the bench said.
The order came on a plea filed by husband Shafin Jahan, who had moved the Supreme Court last month against the Kerala High Court order, saying it was an insult to the independence of women in India. Jahan had also requested the court to order the girl’s father to produce her in court.
According to Jahan, the girl converted from Hinduism to Islam on her own will before marriage. However, the bench refused to acknowledge the protest raised by advocate Haris Beeran appearing on behalf of the husband to engage the NIA. It said, “The impression gathered by his opposition was that the petitioner did not want the correct picture to come up.
Why should you oppose sharing records with the NIA? We want them to be here. If NIA says there are no issues of national importance, we will deal with this as an individual case, but let the entire picture come before this court.”
Beeran also told the court about the use of the term ‘love jihad’ to describe the case and said, “Love jihad’ in common parlance, is some kind of love trap into which girls fall. This is a simple case, which has been blown out of proportion.”
Justice Chandrachud, however, noted that the court has not used any such term and those are catch phrases used by the media and said, “We are not going by such catch phrases used on social media etc.”
NIA had moved an application saying it was open to investigate the case, provided the top court issued a specific order. The case will now come up for hearing next on August 16.
On August 4, the bench had termed the matter as serious and sought production of all documents related to the case. In May, the marriage was declared “null and void” by the High Court, which described it as a case of ‘love jihad’.