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Allahabad HC cites ‘Shariat’ to refuse protection to Muslim woman and Hindu live-in partner being threatened by woman’s family, imposes fine on the couple: Details

The petitioner Muslim woman Saleha was married to Mohsin. 2 years ago, Mohsin married another woman and started living with her.

On 23rd February 2024, the Allahabad High Court ruled that it cannot protect the live-in relationship of a legally wedded Muslim woman with another man, as this amounted to a crime according to Sharia. Justice Renu Agarwal gave this verdict on a plea filed by a married Muslim woman and her Hindu live-in partner fearing for her life against threats from her father and other relatives. The Court said that it cannot support and protect the ‘criminal act’ of the woman.

The High Court observed that the petitioner Muslim woman was already married, and had not acquired any divorce decree from the appropriate authority from her husband before getting into a live-in relationship with a Hindu man. The court said, “She is living with petitioner number 2 in contravention of the provisions of Muslim Law (Shariat), wherein legally wedded wife can not go outside marriage and this act of Muslim women is defined as Zina and Haram. If we go to the criminality of the act of petitioner number 1, she may be prosecuted for the offence under sections 494 and 495 IPC, as such relationship is not covered within the phrase of live-in relationship or relationship in the nature of marriage.”

The court further observed that the petitioner Muslim woman had not applied for conversion of her religion as well. The court said, “She is Muslim by religion and she has not moved any application to the authority concerned for conversion of her religion under sections 8 and 9 of the Conversion Act.”

The petitioner Muslim woman Saleha was married to Mohsin. 2 years ago, Mohsin married another woman and started living with her. Then Saleha moved to her parents’ house. Later, she did not go back to Mohsin citing domestic abuse and moved into a live-in relationship with a Hindu man. She then received death threats from her parents and other family members. Thereafter, she filed a plea in the court seeking protection.

It was a writ petition under Article 226 of the Constitution with prayer for issuing the writ, order or direction in the nature of mandamus commanding the respondents (the State authorities and private parties including the woman’s husband) to not disturb the married life of the petitioners. The court has said that it cannot protect this relationship as it is a crime under Sharia law. The court dismissed the plea with a cost of Rs. 2,000, and directed the petitioners to deposit the costs before the mediation centre of the court within 15 days from the date of the order.

Notably, under the Sharia Law, a Muslim woman in marriage with a Muslim man cannot go into a live-in relationship with anyone else unless she gets a divorce from her first marriage. However, a Muslim man can have four marriages at a time.

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staffhttps://www.opindia.com
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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