The Bombay High Court has observed that merely because a boy and girl are from different religion, their relationship cannot have a religious angle.

The bench of Justice Vibha Kankanwadi and Justice Abhay S. Waghwase made this observation while dealing with an anticipatory bail plea of a Muslim woman who was accused of allegedly forcing her lover to convert to Islam.

“The facts of the case i.e. contents of the FIR would show that there were many opportunities to the informant for severing his relationship with accused No.1 but he has not taken that step. Merely because the boy and girl are from different religion, it cannot have a religions angle. It can be a case of pure love for each other.”, the Court noted.

As per the prosecution case, the man and the woman had a love affair between them. Later on the man accused the woman of insisting him to get converted and he also alleged that he was forced to undergo circumcision.

The appellants-woman had filed anticipatory bail plea before the Special Judge under the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act however the said application came to be rejected.

Senior Advocate V.D. Sapkal appeared for the appellants whereas S.D. Ghayal, A.P.P. appeared for the State.

The High Court noted that the informant said in his FIR that demand about his conversion to Islam before the marriage was made by the woman prior to March 2021 but then he does not say that he severed his relationship with her.

“It appears that now the colour has been tried to be given of Love-Jihad, but when love is accepted then there is less possibility of the person being trapped just for converting him into the other’s religion.”, the Court observed.

On the accusation of forceful circumcision, the Court noted that the expert was unable to say whether the said circumcision was natural or was due to any surgical intervention.

“Therefore, in view of this kind of evidence, which is not supporting the contents of the FIR even at this prima facie stage, the benefit of the same will have to be given to the appellants – original accused persons.”, the Court held.

Thus the Court allowed the plea of the woman and granted anticipatory bail.

Cause Title- Shaikh Sana Farheen Shahmir v. State of Maharashtra

Click here to read/download Order