National Investigation Agency’s (NIA) probe into interfaith marriages in Kerala came to an end with the conclusion that there was no evidence of coercion in any of the cases of ‘love jihad’ that were examined.
The NIA had chosen to investigate 11 cases of interfaith marriages out of the 89 marriages that were before the law enforcement authorities. These 89 marriages were brought to the notice of law enforcement on complaints from the parents of the couples. The cases were referred to the anti-terrorism wing by the Kerala police.
The investigation into interfaith marriages in the state happened in the background of the Hadiya case. Hadiya converted to Islam and married Shafin Jahan, but her marriage was annulled by the Kerala high court on the basis of a petition filed by her father; the Supreme Court set aside the high court order.
According to a report of Hindustan Times, a senior agency official stated that “The NIA is not supposed to file any further report in this regard in the Supreme Court. As far as the NIA is concerned, the matter stands closed as the agency has not found any evidence to suggest that in any of these cases either the man or the woman was coerced to convert.”
The NIA had, in most of the cases found that a similar set of people and organisations associated with Popular Front of India (PFI) were involved in helping either the man or the woman in a relationship convert to Islam. But, it did not find any evidence to prosecute anybody under any of the scheduled offences of the NIA like the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, the report said.