The Rajasthan High Court, on Tuesday, permitted a 23 year old woman, who had converted to Islam and married a Muslim man, to join her husband.
The Bench comprising Justice M.K. Garg and Justice G.K. Vyas noted that the woman, Payal Singhvi alias Arifa, had denied allegations of abduction and expressed her willingness to join her husband, one Mr. Faiz Modi.
It observed, "The corpus Payal Singhvi stated before us that she is major and she was not in illegal detention of any person, therefore, she may be set at free.
After considering the willingness of the corpus Payal Singhvi, who is major of 23 years of age, the corpus Payal Singhvi is set at free and she is permitted to go as per her will."
The Additional Advocate General, appearing for the State, was, however, directed to provide adequate security to Ms. Singhvi, till she reached her husband's house.
The matter has been directed to be listed on 8 November for further arguments.
Earlier last week, the Court had questioned her conversion as well as her interfaith marriage, before sending her to government-run Nari Niketan women's home in Jodhpur. The observations were made on a Petition filed by her brother, Mr. Chirag Singhvi, who had alleged that the conversion and marriage were forceful and that Mr. Modi had, in fact, abducted his sister.
Taking note of such allegations, the Court had then directed registration of an FIR based on the complaint filed by her brother. While the Nikahnama was produced before the Court during the hearing, it had opined that an investigation needed to be conducted, in order to ascertain the truthfulness of the conversion and the marriage.
The Bench had then framed the following question for consideration: "After hearing the learned counsel for the petitioner and perusing all the documents produced before us to prove the fact of ‘Nikah’, we are of the opinion that very important question “whether without any procedure or rule conversion of religion can be changed or not so also in this case whether the fact of ‘Nikah’ of Payal Singhvi is established on the basis of self contradictory documents on record or not” is in question."