TENSION prevailed at Nagla Mulla village in Firozabad after a Muslim family, one of whose men is facing charges under the anti-conversion law, was chased even as the 19-year-old woman involved in the case gave a testimony countering the allegations. In a statement on Thursday before a magistrate, the woman said she had left home with the Muslim youth, 23, of her own free will, had got married to him in court and not converted.
The police said several people from the woman’s village, the neighbouring Jamalpur, gathered outside the house of the accused and chased his family members on Wednesday. The police said they acted before any violence broke out and forces were deployed in both the villages.
The woman had left home with the youth on December 22, and on December 26, a case under the anti-conversion law and of kidnapping was lodged against him.
On Monday, the woman was traced and brought back to her family; the police are looking for the 23-year-old.
Matsaina Station Officer Vinay Kumar Mishra said, “The woman said they had a court marriage before running away. As per her claims, they had a nikaah. But we are verifying the documents provided by her, as they show her name as Zeenat and she claims she has not converted… She is denying the allegations that she was forced into the marriage or faced any pressure.”
Mishra added that the woman said she had known the 23-year-old for the past three years and they were in love. The police said they were investigating the matter as they look for the accused.
Sadar Circle Officer Hiralal Kanaujiya said the woman is doing her graduation while the youth does random jobs and used to visit her family.
According to Kanaujiya, the 23-year-old didn’t get along with his family and had left home a few years ago. “After the FIR was registered, we put them on surveillance and the woman was found while the man somehow got information of the police coming and escaped.”
On Wednesday, the Circle Officer said, they got information of an agitated crowd from Jamalpur moving towards the house of the accused in Nagla Mulla, 3 km away.
Denying any stone-pelting or violence, he said, “They were stopped. Some who were caught by the police were let off after they claimed they were not from that village. We have talked to the man’s family and they too confirmed there was no stone-pelting, but they were chased by the locals of Jamalpur.”
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