Hadiya alias Akhila Ashokan, a 24-year-old woman from Kerala who converted to Islam to marry a Muslim man, on Monday told the Supreme Court that she wants freedom.
The Supreme Court directed Hadiya to resume her studies in Tamil Nadu’s Salem. The dean of the Salem-based college has been appointed as her guardian. The bench directed college and university concerned to re-admit Hadiya and grant her hostel facility.
Her deposition began after the apex court in its last hearing on October 30 said, “Hadiya’s consent as an adult is prime”. The top court wanted to ascertain her views on her marriage to Muslim man.
Kerala woman’s decision to convert to Islam to marry has instigated a countrywide debate over ‘love jihad’.
A bench headed by Chief Justice of India (CJI) Dipak Misra while interacting with Hadiya asked her about her school, why she chose medicine as her study, what she does during her free time, what were her hobbies during her college days.
Replying to the top court’s question on if she would like to continue her studies on state expense, she said, “I want to but not on state's expense. I will when my husband can take care of me.”
The bench has directed the Kerala Police to provide adequate security to Hadiya and ensure she travels to Salem at the earliest. The top court also directed the state of Tamil Nadu to provide protection to Hadiya.
However, Hadiya’s father K M Ashokan and National Investigation Agency (NIA) have contended that Hadiya had been indoctrinated by radical groups and her consent was not free.