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The affidavit says further that the Kerala police “would have reported to central government if any scheduled offences found to have been committed during such investigation as per the NIA act”.

The Kerala government has told the Supreme Court that its police had conducted a “thorough investigation” into the conversion of a Hindu woman – Akhila Ashokan alias Hadiya – to Islam and her subsequent marriage to a Muslim man – Shafin Jahan – and did not find material warranting a probe by the National Investigation Agency (NIA).

A Supreme Court Bench headed by then Chief Justice JS Khehar had, on August 16, directed the NIA to probe whether there was a wider pattern of alleged ‘love jihad’ in the case.

The state government said that though it has complied with the court’s direction to transfer the case to the NIA, the police has so far not found commission of any “scheduled offences” which statutorily warrant transfer of the case to the central agency.

Shafin Jahan, who had married Hadiya last December and challenged the annulment of his marriage by the high court, has recently filed an interim plea seeking recall of the order asking the NIA to take over the investigation. He had claimed that the woman had converted several months before their marriage, which was finalised through a matrimonial site.

The Supreme Court Bench headed by Justice Khehar’s successor, Chief Justice Dipak Misra, had on October 3 – during course of proceedings in the petition filed by Jahan to challenge the Kerala High Court’s order – wondered whether the court had the powers to annul a marriage between the two adults.

The state government, in the additional affidavit filed on Saturday, said that its police was competent to conduct the probe and would have reported to the Centre if any ‘scheduled offence’ was found to have been committed.

“The crime branch of Kerala Police had conducted the investigation in an efficient and sincere manner. The investigation conducted so far by Kerala Police has not revealed any incident relating to commission of any scheduled offences to make a report to the central government under Section 6 of the National Investigation Agency Act, 2008,” the affidavit said.

“The Kerala Police had conducted a thorough investigation in the above mentioned crime in an efficient manner,” the affidavit adds.

While giving details of the investigation by the police, the state said the antecedents of Shafin Jahan were probed and details of involvement in Facebook groups and other social media were collected.

It also said that details of the persons involved, those who had attended their wedding, financial arrangements and others related to the marriage between Hadiya and Shafin Jahan were also investigated.

The affidavit says further that the Kerala police “would have reported to central government if any scheduled offences found to have been committed during such investigation as per the NIA act”.

On October 3, the apex court had also questioned the legality of Hadiya’s father keeping her in his custody for the past several months.

“We will hear logical and legal arguments on two issues — can the HC nullify a marriage exercising jurisdiction under Article 226 and was an NIA probe necessary,” Chief Justice Dipak Misra had observed, posting the case for hearing on October 9.

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