Two persons have been arrested on charges of helping a Muslim man “forcibly” convert a Kerala woman and attempting to take her to Syria to be sold off to Islamic State terrorists. Fayaz and Siyad, both natives of North Paravur near Kochi, were arrested on Wednesday following investigations based on a complaint by the 25-year-old woman, who was rescued from Saudi Arabia and brought home last year by her family.
The two are friends of Muhammad Riyaz from Thalassery in Kannur district, the prime accused in the case. “They have been charged under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act,” Ernakulam Rural SP A V George said, adding a hunt is on to arrest eight more accused, including Riyas, in the case. He said the police have begun a probe into their alleged link with the Islamic State terrorists.
George said both Fayaz and Siyad were arrested based on the woman’s complaint that she was allegedly tortured by them in a house in North Paravoor before Riyaz took her abroad. The woman had alleged that Riyaz pretended to be in love with her when she was studying in Bengaluru in 2014 and forced her to convert to Islam and married her.
The woman from Pathanamthitta was brought up in Gujarat. She had moved the Kerala High Court last year seeking an NIA probe against Riyaz for attempting to take her to Syria from Saudi Arabia and sell her to the Islamic State terrorists as a sex slave. She has also alleged that her marriage was registered using forged documents.