Former Supreme Court (SC) judge R V Raveendran has turned down the request to supervise the National Investigation Agency (NIA) investigation into Kerala resident Hadiya’s conversion to Islam and her marriage with a Muslim named Shefin Jahan. An SC bench comprising former Chief Justice J S Khehar and Justice D Y Chandrachud had asked Raveendran to oversee the probe on August 16.
“It is a matter between the court and myself,’’ Raveendran said while confirming that he had turned down the request. Sources said that Raveendran has stated that he would not be in a position to oversee the probe. The NIA will now approach the court to appoint another judge.
The SC had initially considered appointing former judge K S Radhakrishnan to supervise the probe. But it reconsidered the choice after Jahan’s lawyers suggested that someone from outside Kerala should be appointed to ensure a fair investigation.
The Kerala High Court had in May annulled Hadiya’s and Jahan’s marriage after the woman’s father moved the court against her conversion and marriage claiming that she had been coerced. The SC on August 16 ordered the NIA probe under Raveendran’s supervision after Jahan approached the court with a plea to restore the marriage.