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Karnataka to take steps to counter 'Love Jihad' movement

Friday, October 23, 2009 08:27:00 AM, IANS

HC directs Kerala Govt. to probe 'Love Jihad': The Kerala High Court Wednesday directed the State government to inquire into ‘Love Jihad’ or ‘Romeo Jihad’, a campaign allegedly propagated by a Muslim organisation to convert girls into Islam under the pretext of love. The report has to be filed within .... Read Full

Bangalore: The Karnataka government Thursday said 'Love Jihad', an alleged attempt by some Muslim men to lure non-Muslim girls with promises of marriage and get them converted to Islam, appeared to be a serious issue and it would take steps to counter it.


A meeting of senior police officials will be held either Friday or Saturday to decide ways to tackle the attempts, Home Minister V.S. Acharya told reporters after a cabinet meeting.


The government has written to Kerala authorities for information on the so-called 'Love jihad movement' which came to public notice in that state in early September when posters warning Hindu girls against falling prey to such a movement surfaced.


The Karnataka government's decision came a day after the state high court expressed concern over the alleged 'Love Jihad' attempts and directed the government to probe the matter.


Justice K. Sreedhar Rao and Justice Ravi Malimath gave the direction during hearing of a habeas corpus petition by C. Selvaraj of Chamarajnagar district, about 180 km from here, seeking production of his daughter Siljaraj.


Selvaraj said in his petition that his daughter Siljaraj was missing since August last year. He came to know that she had eloped with a Muslim youth to Kerala.


Siljaraj, who was produced in the court by Chamarajnagar police, told the judges that she had married Aksar of Kannur, Kerala, on her own and was undergoing religious training after getting converted to Islam.


Rao and Malimath directed her to stay with her parents till the police complete the investigation. The court also said that since she was a major and if it was found to be a bona-fide love marriage, she could go back to Aksar.


The state police are to submit their report by Nov 13.

To support his claim for the custody of his daughter, Selvaraj submitted copies of the Sep 29 judgment of the Kerala High Court in similar habeas corpus petitions.


The Kerala high court had given custody of two girls, who had gone missing in similar circumstances, to their parents. Rao and Malimath said the issue "warranted a thorough investigation and it also created a serious suspicion with national ramifications".


They asked the Karnataka police chief to coordinate with the Kerala police in investigating the issue.


The posters against 'love jihad' in Kerala in September were in the name of Sri Rama Sene (army of god Ram), which had earned notoriety in Karnataka earlier this year by bashing up girls for going to a pub in the coastal town of Mangalore and later threatening to marry off boys and girls found celebrating Valentine's Day.









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