Malaysia’s top court annuls unilateral conversions of minors

Source: Associated Press

By EILEEN NG

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — Malaysia’s top court said in a landmark decision Monday that both parents must consent to the religious conversion of a minor, ruling unanimously in favor of a Hindu woman whose ex-husband converted their three children to Islam without telling her.

The ruling ended a nine-year legal battle for M. Indira Gandhi, whose former husband became a Muslim and converted their three children in 2009. He also snatched one of the children, then 11 months old, from the family home.

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She won custody of the three children and challenged their conversions in civil courts in Malaysia’s dual-court system. A lower court annulled them, but the Court of Appeal overturned the ruling, saying civil courts had no jurisdiction over Islamic conversions. The ruling was appealed to the nation’s highest court.

The case has been closely followed by large Chinese and Indian minorities who fear their rights are increasingly being trampled by Islamic jurisprudence.

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1 reply

  1. In the meantime soon these ‘minors’ are no longer ‘minors’ and it is hoped that they will be able to choose for themselves which religion they want to follow. ‘There is no compulsion in religion’. (Quran)

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