AFPJuly 26, 2013, 1:10 am
KUALA LUMPUR (AFP) - A Malaysian court on Thursday ruled against the 2009 conversion of three Hindu children to Islam without their mother's knowledge, a verdict welcomed by non-Muslim groups.
A high court in the northern city of Ipoh declared the conversion of Indira Gandhi's children, now aged five, 15 and 16, by their father to be unconstitutional, said Indira's lawyer K. Shanmuga.
The judge ruled that the father had failed to take the mother and children to Islamic authorities for their consent to the conversion, in a rare verdict in the multiracial but Muslim-majority nation, Shanmuga said.
"It is the first time ever that a child's conversion certificate has been quashed by a high court," he told AFP.
Indira, a kindergarten teacher in her late 30s, faced losing custody of her children after her husband converted himself and them without her knowledge.
Under Malaysian sharia law, which governs civil matters for Muslims, a non-Muslim parent cannot share custody of converted children.
Indira, a Hindu, got a 2010 high court verdict to award her custody. But her husband went into hiding with their youngest daughter and the conversion remained in dispute.
Earlier this month Malaysia withdrew an Islamic law which allows one parent to give consent for a child's conversion, after an outcry.
Opponents said it discriminated against minorities despite government promises to address their grievances.
Religious groups welcomed Thursday's verdict.
"We are very happy about that decision. But it must be accepted by all the Islamic and other government agencies," said Mohan Shan, an official with the Malaysian Consultative Council of Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Sikhism and Taoism.
Conversions of children and "body-snatching" cases -- in which Islamic authorities tussle with families over the remains of people whose religion is disputed -- have previously raised tensions.More than 60 percent of Malaysia's 28 million people are Muslim ethnic Malays, but it also has sizeable Chinese and Indian minorities who are non-Muslims.
GOOD DECISION, IF SOMEONE DOES NOT INTEND TO GO ALLAH, IT IS HIS OWN CHOICE. SINCE WHEN SOME IDIOTS COULD DECIDE FOR THE FATE OF ANOTHER PERSON.ReplyDelete
IN ANOTHER DEVELOPMENT ON THE NATIONAL FEEDLOT AS I READ THE JAPANESE ARE PAYING THE 250 MILLION TO THE GOVERNMENT, THE 250 MILLION TO THE FORMER OWNERS' BORROWINGS ARE WRITTEN OFF PRESUMABLY, THE GOVERNMENT GETS BACK ITS MONEY FROM THE NIPPONS WHO IN TURN GET THE LOT, AND WHO IS GOING TO SAY THE ELITE MALAYS ARE STUPID BUT LAZY MAYBE. AYEM WONDERING HOW IN THE WORLD THIS GOVERNMENT HAS BEEN VOTED IN FOR THE LAST 57 YEARS AND THIS TELLS YOU WHAT AN IDIOTIC AND UNEDUCATED LOT MALAYSIANS ARE. SO DON'T BLAME THE EXISTING GOVERNMENT.
For the non Muslims, this was an unexpected good verdict. But the self appointed guardian of Islam from Pasir Mas, nicknamed The Toad will come out making noise for sure.ReplyDelete
The mother's fight is not over. One fears the overzealous JATI, JAIS, JAIM and whathaveyous will flex muscles to make things difficult.ReplyDelete
On a different note it is interesting how the NFC scandal is evolving. Does this mean the Japanese buyer will now own the condo assets as well? There was a prospective viewing of the condos this week (little birdie reports reliably). Or could it be the dwindling umno wanita support for a cow-woman that is dictating the sudden "sell" quickly and quietly?