[This is the text of the open letter written by the eminent poet and public intellectual K Satchidanandan to Com. Pinarayi Vijayan]
I am writing this letter to you in total despair and with utmost concern.
You must by now have come to know that Hadia, who had converted to Islam and married a man belonging to the same religion voluntarily going by all credible accounts including her own statements, is now in a state of house arrest besieged as she is not just by police, but the RSS brigade too who would not permit her to meet people and speak her mind.
Sadly the whole question has been reduced to a communal issue by vested interests. In fact, it is a larger issue that involves human rights and a grown-up woman’ s freedom of choice and agency. She is being treated like an infant; the high court has annulled her marriage citing improbable reasons and ordered an inquiry reducing the whole issue to one of ‘ love- jihad’, an absurd and self-contradicting term manufactured by the right-wing thought- machine. The Supreme Court has already challenged the High court’ s untenable position on the issue.
Many of us are deeply worried about Hadia’ s state of physical and mental health as she seems to have been tortured by her father and is being kept under surveillance by RSS with his connivance.
We are happy that Kerala’s Women’s Commission has taken interest in the case, but we also think that your intervention at this stage is very crucial in obtaining Hadia’ s release and finding out her state of health and the truth of the whole issue. We have full faith in your ability and readiness to intervene at this critical juncture without any delay.
With warm regards,
Prof. K. Satchidanandan
3 thoughts on “Help us resist the Hindutva thought-machine: K Satchidanandan writes to the Chief Minister of Kerala”
This is gross interference in a very personal affair. A 24 year old woman with education mad fre will to convert or another religion can not be prevented from doing so by anybody. This HC order is not only bad in law and obscurantist in its comments but also outright slave mentality and male chauvinism.
It must be soon reversed.
When the SC is examining the matter what can the CM do other than to wait for it’s order. If he does anything now without permission of the court(s) he may be hauled up for contempt. Being pragmatic is more important than showing off his leftist credentials.
No one is so foolish as to expect the CM to solve the issue especially when it is in Court. But the Kerala govt can do much to prevent the blatant control the father is exercising on the young woman and make sure she is actually protected. The HC order or the SC’s do not ask for solitary confinement or the reduction of her rights in any way. The Kerala police can also make sure that the police employed there are not communal. It can also take a public stand in favour of the woman’s rights. The State Women’s Commission could have inquired too. Please stop building alibis for terrible unforgivable neglect.