In an interview with The News Minute on November 8, National Commission for Women (NCW) acting Chairperson Rekha Sharma has asserted that forced conversions in the state of Kerala are real and Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan was like “an ostrich who is keeping his head buried in the sand.”
Sharma said that the issue was not being taken seriously by anyone, including the Chief Minister. “I have been here (in Kerala) for a few days, and I am aware that forceful conversion is taking place. The Chief Minister is still not taking the issue seriously. He might have seen the Aamir Khan movie, where he says ‘All is well.’ And is under the impression that all is well in the state,” Rekha Sharma said. “Neither the government nor other political parties are taking this seriously. They need to wake up,” she added.
Sharma also claimed that foreign funds are being used to convert girls to a particular faith and asserted that it is an issue that needs to be probed. “There are many young people who are forcefully converting vulnerable young women in Kerala, to another religion. These men must be getting financial assistance from outside India. The foreign funding behind the conversion of vulnerable young women in Kerala must be probed,” she said.
Earlier, the NIA had flagged the brainwashing and conversion of Hindu women in the state by radical Islamist outfits such as the PFI. PFI is allegedly involved in hypnotic counselling of Hindu girls in order to convert them in their religious centres as per NIA investigations. A religious facilitation centre managed by PFI called ‘Sathyasarini/Markaz Hidaya Da’wa Institute’ in Manjeri, Kerala is allegedly connected with 9 out of 11 cases of ‘Love-Jihad’ investigated by NIA.
Earlier this year, Islamist outfit Popular Front of India had claimed that they spent Rs 1 crore in pursuing the case of Hadiya, formerly known as Akhila Asokan in the Supreme Court. PFI had come out in support of Hadiya when the Supreme Court of India had upheld the marriage of Hadiya with Shafeen Jahan which was annulled by the Kerala High Court last year. Hadiya had also met the PFI chief after her marriage was upheld by the SC.