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Kerala High Court Orders Police Protection For Interfaith Couple Wanting to Get Married

Ashitha P Laksmi and Suhaib, both natives of Kannur district, fell in love with each other and wanted to get married under the Special Marriage Act.

Neethu Reghukumar | CNN-News18

Updated:November 7, 2017, 12:07 AM IST
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Kerala High Court
File photo of the Kerala High Court.

Thiruvananthapuram: The Kerala High Court has ordered police protection for a Muslim man and Hindu woman who wanted to get married.

Ashitha P Laksmi and Suhaib, both natives of Kannur district, fell in love with each other and wanted to get married under the Special Marriage Act.

The order came after a review petition was filed by Suhaib seeking to recall an earlier order passed by the court dismissing the habeas corpus petition filed by him.

The petition alleged that Lakshmi was detained at Sivasakthi Yoga Vidya Kendra at Udayamperoor and underwent serious physical torture at the hands of the people there.

According to the petition, after suffering about six months torture at the hands of the people at the yoga centre, the girl eloped for a second time with the boy and is on the run now.

Adovcate A Rajasimhan, appearing for the petitioner, said, "They are not able to register their marriage and they fear for their life. That is why they have approached the court a second time."

The Kerala High Court order said, "If the petitioner requests, the police shall provide adequate protection. The government pleader shall get instructions regarding the allegations made in the review petition."

Rajasimhan said that after the couple eloped the first time, the girl's family called her back under the guise of a compromise and illegally detained her in her house.

"Later, the people from the yoga centre along with her father and her uncles took her to the centre forcefully. She was given sedatives and when she refused to go they tortured her, beaten up and gagged. She was also subjected to physical torture,” he said.

“Suhaib had filed a habeas corpus petition in the court leading to Ashitha being produced in court on February 23. She was threatened with dire consequences including Suhaib’s murder by the people at the yoga centre, so she told court that she was willfully staying with her parents. Later, she made her parents believe that she had changed and would not go with him. Then they allowed her to come back home,” he added.

“From there, she contacted Suhaib and told him about this. But, the phones were tapped and the family and the centre found out. She was taken back to the centre, where she suffered more torture. There were also attempts to make her a mental patient," Rajasimhan said.

The petition also says that the yoga centre tried to brand Suhaib as a jihadi. One of the staff at the yoga centre tried to molest Laksmi, it added.

The petition said that along with another girl, she escaped from the yoga centre and, knowing that she would be traced, she went back to her house and told them that and told them that she did not want to go back to the yoga centre.

After staying for some time, Laksmi ran away from home on October 10. She linked up with Suhaib and the couple has been on the run, not able to register their marriage. They fear for their life and approached the court, the petition stated.

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| Edited by: Ashish Yechury
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