Where is the justice in all the conversion cases brought to courts?
Yesterday in the high court of Ipoh a case was brought up to decide whether the civil high court has jurisdiction to hear a custody battle involving three children who were converted to Islam by one parent. The mother M Indira Gandhi, 35 is seeking custody for her three children who were converted to Islam by ex-husband K Patmanathan @ Muhammad Riduan Abdullah, 41. The syariah Court has not debated the case involving all the parties but unilaterally declared that the custody of children is with the father.
It is important that the civil and the syariah courts recognise that mandated justice and equality to the most aggrieved party in this case the mother should not be denied and delayed. The inner suffering of the mother in not having the custody of her own flesh and blood can never be compensated and nor will the father, court officials and the religious advocates, ever realise know the mother’s feelings.
All those religious officers who are helping the father to hide away the children from the mother will bring displeasure for their action from others. It is acts like compassion and justice and welfare for the aggrieved mother who may not be the believer that will foster goodwill and a sense of respect for their religious beliefs and faith.
The civil court must stand up to uphold justice, fairness, equality and human rights of the victim. Court officials who cannot uphold justice and fairness must relieve their post to someone else who can do it. Should religious beliefs of others deny a mother to even see her children than the civil courts have clearly abdicated its very purpose of existence.
Besides that the welfare and maternal needs of the children is denied at this tender age. Judge’s personnel beliefs and faith must not stand in between his call for executing justice and fair judgements.
What madam Indira Gandhi is undergoing is clear abuse of mother’s right to a fair hearing from a civil court which is in conflict with itself because of religious beliefs and religious intimidation. It is a sacred duty of the majority community to provide equality and assurance to religious minorities that they too have their rights protected. That will bring loyality and support from all community to the majority community.