'No terror angle in conversions'

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There are also questions about the propriety of an investigation by the NIA when the anti-terrorist body has already claimed that there is an organised radicalisation programme being implemented in Kerala. Speaking to India Today, a senior officer of the NIA said, "We have spoken to both Athiras who have said they were lured". The minister said this in reference to a high-pitched war of words yesterday between two lawyers during the hearing of the sensitive Hadiya case, related to an inter-religious marriage in Kerala, in the apex court. But, the agency has so far not discovered any terror angle to the conversion.

Kasargod resident Athira alias Ayesha and Palakkad resident Athira Nambiar have both told NIA that they were lured.

In their statements before the NIA, the women said that they were provided literature and audio-video materials relating to hard line interpretations of the religion and subsequently brainwashed to embrace Islam.

One of the two recently reconverted to Hinduism after converting to Islam a few months back.

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He said this while criticising the Pinarayi Vijayan led LDF government for stating in the Supreme Court that a controversial Muslim marriage case in the state did not warrant a National Investigation Agency (NIA) probe. The court has not given its judgement on the validity of the woman's marriage, though it wondered whether the high court had the power to annul the marriage, and the case has been adjourned.

The Supreme Court had earlier asked the agency to probe "love jihad" in Kerala following a petition by a Kerala-based Muslim man whose marriage with a Hindu woman last December was annulled by the Kerala high court.

The NIA suspects the role of Popular Front of India in both the cases.

Shafeen Jahan married Akhila Ashokan in December a year ago after she converted to Islam and rechristened herself as Hadiya.

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The social media campaigns have been mostly going on in Kozhikode and Kochi. They are always welcome in Kerala, the chief minister added.

The list of these marriages, which took place since 2015, was provided to the NIA by the Kerala police.

The court also allowed Sruti to go with Anees.

"Yogi Adityanath spoke of "love jihad" in Kerala... this court should know the ground ground realities", Dave had said, adding that Shah had also visited Kerala.

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