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Malaysian Court Bans Forced Conversion of Minors to Islam

KUALA LUMPUR: The top Malaysian court has annulled the unilateral religious conversion of minors in the country. 

The ruling has banned conversion of children to Islam without the mutual consent of husband and wife.

The verdict was passed in on a petition filed by a Hindu woman M.Indira Gandhi. She had told the court that her ex-husband converted their three children to Islam against her will.

According to Indira, her husband converted to Islam and enforced children’s conversion without telling her in 2009.

Malaysia has a dual court system, secular and religious.

Gandhi had earlier challenged her children’s conversions through the civil courts.But, the Court of Appeal ruled that civil courts had no jurisdiction over Islamic conversions.

She then appealed against the decision to the top Malaysian court.

The Federal Court on Monday annulled the children’s conversions as it was against Ms Gandhi’s consent.

The Malaysian government had proposed a d law to stop children from being unilaterally converted to Islam in April 2017.

However, the law was opposed by country’s Muslim clerics, saying that it contradicts a fatwa or religious edict by Shariah Lawyers Association of Malaysia.

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