Hindu mom gets custody of Muslim kids
The Seremban High Court also grants her a divorce, but allows her ex-husband to visit the minors every week.
UPDATEDSEREMBAN: A Hindu woman today won custody of her daughter and son, who were converted to Islam last year by their father.
In granting custody of the two minors to S Deepa, 30, Seremban High Court judge Zabariah Mohd Yusof also ruled that their father, Izwan Viran Abdullah, was allowed weekly visits.
The girl is nine and the boy six years old. They are the couple’s only children.
Deepa, who hails from Jelebu, also won a divorce from Izwan. They got married in March 2003.
Zabariah delivered her decisions in chambers. Deepa’s counsel, R Jayamalar, said the rulings were made under Section 51, subsections 1and 2, of the Law Reform Act as Deepa and Viran’s marriage had been solemnised based on civil law.
Izwan, who became a Muslim in 2012, converted the children without his wife’s knowledge. He subsequently obtained an order for the custody, care and control of the children from the Seremban Syariah Court.
The Seremban High Court heard submissions from the two sides last Thursday.
The High Court decision today by-passed a Syariah Court ruling last year that granted the custody of the children to Izwan.
After today’s judgment, Deepa and the children, all obviously overcome by emotion, were seen outside the court hugging one another.Deepa also hugged her lawyer and two officials of the Women’s Aid Organisation.
Izwan was clearly unhappy with the outcome of the case.
“Both my children are already 99% Muslim,” he said. “Their mother is not Muslim. How can she take care of my children?”
Interestingly, Deepa’s mother left Hinduism many years ago to embrace Islam and marry a Malay man. She and her husband, Mohamad Sofi, were at court to support Deepa.
Before the verdict was announced, Mohamad told FMT he felt it was wrong for Izwan to convert the children without their mother’s knowledge.
Izwan’s lawyer Muhammad Faiz Fadzil said the decision will be challenged at the Court of Appeal. Deepa will next pursue a separate case to revoke the conversion of her son and daughter.
Woman decries children’s conversion to Islam