Tehelka SIT investigation reveals how some Muslim clerics find a way around the anti-conversion law to convert people and pave way for inter-faith marriages
“First of all, convert the Hindu girl into Islam before marrying her. After the marriage, if the girl asks that she wants to leave Islam and go back to Hindu religion, then first politely ask her not to do so. And if she doesn’t listen, then give her slap on the face. But it should not be hard enough to leave a handprint or cause bruising. Beat her in the way that it should not result in any external injury or fracture in bones. You should not leave any evidence of violence on your wife’s body if you want to escape police action for domestic violence,” said Maulana Mohammad Muqeem to Tehelka reporter, who approached him posing as fictitious character for an advice for his Muslim nephew, who is looking to marry a Hindu girl. When Maulana Muqeem gave this advice to the reporter, he was working as Imam of a mosque in Uttar Pradesh city before moving to his present job at Madarsa.
“If your wife continues to practice Hindu religion and refuse to return to Islam even after getting thrashed, then you should take her to the sharia court where she was converted to Islam. Tell the sharia people that the girl has gone back to the Hindu religion after the marriage. Sharia court members will try to persuade her to not to do so. If she doesn’t listen to them also, then the sharia court will tell both of you to divorce each other,” said Maulana Muqeem.
Tehelka contacted Maulana Muqeem after several states of India passed anti-conversion law. Under the new anti-conversion law, interfaith couples must now give two months notice to a district official before getting married.
Currently, under the special Marriage Act, 1954, that governs interfaith marriages in India, couples must give a notice of 30 days. The new law has criminal aspects too, including a jail term of up to ten years if convicted of using marriage to force a spouse to change her faith. Parents, siblings and “any relative” by marriage and adoption can complain against a conversion. Such marriages can also be nullified. The burden of proof lies on the persons converting, or those counselling the persons to convert, to prove the conversion isn’t forced. Tehelka’s reality check was done on Maulana Muqeem after the anti-Conversion law was passed in India’s most populous state, Uttar Pradesh. Maulana Muqeem crossed all limits and advised the reporter to hit her wife if she tries to leave Islam religion and return to Hindu religion after converting to Islam and marrying him. And if she doesn’t budge and insist on going back to Hindu religion, then divorce is the only option.
Reporter…. “Aap keh rahe ho na agar wo apne mazhab par nahin kayam rehti hai to Hindu par chali jaati hai. Islam par nahin rehti hai”.
Reporter…. “To ladka pehley usey samjhaye. Phir tamacha maarey”.
Reporter…. “Magar tamacha marey to wo thaney main ilzaam laga sakti hai” ?
Reporter…. “Ki mere saath maar-peet ki hai. Domestic violence hua hai”.
Muqeem…. “Tamacha.. nahin usmein ye ehtiyaat hai. Samjhaayengey tab ki tamacha aisa maarna ki choodi toot ke haath mein, khoon na nikley. Ya gaal par na maarkar muh chap jaye. Ya ghoonsa na maarkar ki haddi toot jaye. Samjhayengey ki tamacha maarney se matlab ye hai ki hulka-fulka maarna. Usko maarna aisa maarna ki khoon na nikley. Haddi na tootey. Nishaan na padey. Tumhari shikayatein karengey to koi nishaan na dikha sakey.”
Reporter…. “Saboot na ho koi”.
Muqeem…. “Saboot na ho koi. Haan aisa mat marna. Aur phir samjhaye… nahin maan rahi hulka-fulka maar diya. Sharia adalat jahan kalma padaya gaya hai, wahan lekar jaaye. Jee mainey nikaah kiya. Musalman thi. Ab ye nahin maan rahi. Ab ye Hindu banney jaa rahi hai. Ab mujhey kya karna hai. To wo samjhayengey apne tareekey se… baat karengey ussey. Wo maan jaati hai to theek hai. Nahin maanti to wo phir alag kar dengey”.
Reporter…. “Talaaq ho jayega” ?
Muqeem…. “Talaaq ho jayega”.
Reporter…. “Agar ladka-ladki talaaq ke liye tayyar nahin hue”?
Muqeem…. “Wo talaaq ho jayega”.
[Muqeem advised the reporter that if hi wife did not budge from her decision to go back to Hindu religion, then he should approach the sharia court where her wife was converted to Islam. If sharia court members also fail to convince her to return back to Islam then they will be separated by the sharia court]
Tehelka journalist met Maulana Muqeem for his advice, with a fictitious deal that reporter’s nephew, a Muslim, aged 29 is in love with a Hindu girl and the two want to get married. How the interfaith marriage will take place? On this, Maulana Muqeem advised the reporter to first get the Hindu girl converted into Islam; otherwise their marriage will be illegitimate.
Muqeem…. “Bilkul saaf mana kar diya. Musalmaan bachchey ka nikaah Hindu bachchey se nahin ho sakta. Bilkul nahin ho sakta. Ye hai ki ladki deen-imaan main aaye pehley.”
[Muqeem told reporter that Muslim boy or girl cannot marry a Hindu girl or boy without them being converted into Islam first]
To convert Hindu girl into Islam for marriage, Maulana Muqeem gave an idea to Tehelka journalist.
Muqeem…. “Achcha ye to jo ho gaya usool ki baat hai. Doosri ek baat wo hai jo bahut mushkil se milti hai. Taweez ke zariye se. Ek dua jhaad kuch cheez karke usey khila diya jaye”.
Reporter…. “Ladki ko” ?
Muqeem…. “Haan ladki ko. Wo udhar maeel ho jaye”.
Reporter….. “Maeel ho jaye matlab” ?
Muqeem….. “Uski taraf jhuk jaye. Ladke ki taraf”.
Reporter…. “Matlab Musalman ho jaye”.
[Now, Maulana Muqeem advised the reporter how to convert a Hindu girl into Islam for marriage. He said that the girl can be converted to Islam with the help of Taweez [amulet/talisman]. Also, something mixed with some “dua” will be given to the girl to eat, which will make her mind tilt towards Islam].
Maulana Muqeem told us that he would send the Hindu girl for conversion to Islamic scholar Kaleem Siddiqui who lives in Meerut. According to Muqeem, Kaleem Siddiqui has a permission from the government to convert people. Muqeem said he doesn’t have the permission to convert people. He said that if any Hindu girl comes to him for the conversion, he cannot accede to her request. And if he tried to do so, he would be arrested.
This is to just remind our readers that Islamic scholar, Maulana Kaleem Siddqui, about whom Maulana Muqeem was talking about for the conversion was arrested by the Uttar Pradesh Anti-Terrorist Squad [ATS] from Meerut for allegedly running the biggest conversion syndicate. At the time of filing of this report, he is lodged in a jail.
Reporter…. “Ladki ko agar hum aap ke paas lekar ayengey to aap karwa dengey ladki ko Islam qubool”?
Muqeem…. “Main bhejunga Meerut. Meerut main Fulat mein humarey ustaad ke ustaad hai Kaleem Siddiqui saheb. Jinko sarkaar se aisi permission hasil hai. Agar koi Kalma pada sakta hai to aap usko padaye. Unko ye permission hai sarkaar se. Yahan koi ladki mere paas aati hai. Mujhey permission nahin hai. Mujhey police waley pakad lengey ki kyon kalma padaya aapne. Unke paas permission hai.”
Reporter….. “Kaleem Siddiqui ke paas”?
Muqeem…. “Kaleem Siddiqui saheb”.
Reporter….. “Meerut main kahan rehte hai” ?
Muqeem…. “Wo Fullat main rehte hai” ?
[According to Maulana Muqeem, he will send the Hindu girl for conversion to Maulana Kaleem Siddiqui in Meerut. He said Maulana Siddiqui has the permission from the government to convert people, which he doesn’t have.]
Maulana Muqeem now explained how the introduction of Love-Jihad law had changed the scenario in Uttar Pradesh.
Muqeem….. “Ab ye BJP sarkar na ho. Ye kanoon pass karwa lengey. Kanoon paas ho gaya Love-Jihad ka.”
Reporter…. “Ordinance laye hai ye”.
Muqeem…. “Agar ye na paas hua hota to ye hi kalma, yahin padwa deta. Pakdo nikaah hua bhai. Main ye keh deta ki kalma padwaya hai, nikah padwaya hai. Koi dikkat nahin, kuch nahin.”
Reporter….. “Aap hi karwa dete” ?
[Muqeem said if love-jihad law had not come into effect in Uttar Pradesh, he himself would have converted the Hindu girl into Islam and performed the nikah too. However, now he is wary of the Love-Jihad law].
The first meeting with Maulana Muqeem was held at a mosque, where he was working as Imam. After months, we met Maulana Muqeem again, this time at his new workplace, situated in another area of the city. In the second meeting, Maulana Muqeem gave us two ideas of how to marry a Hindu girl by hoodwinking the law. He said that he was open to both the options.
Reporter…. “Court marriage apne-apne mazhab par hogi”?
Reporter…. “Bhanja humara Muslim rahega. Ladki Hindu rahegi” ?
Muqeem…. “Apne-apne mazhab par”.
Reporter…. “Lekin aap to keh rahe ho wo shaadi Islam mein jayaz nahin hai”. ?
Muqeem…. “Court mein honey ka matlab sarkar ki taraf se certificate hai. Lekin dono aapas mein saath reh sakte hai. Udhar se humein certificate mil jayega. Idhar hum unka fauran nikah karwa dengey.”
Reporter…. “Udhar certificate milega”?
Muqeem…. “Idhar hum fauran nikah karwa dengey”.
Reporter…. “Nikah aur conversion dono aap hi karwayengey” ?
Reporter…. “Aap hi karwayengey”.
[To avoid controversy of converting a Hindu girl into Islam for the purpose of marriage, Muqeem gave us an idea that we can first go for the court marriage and get the certificate of marriage to let the government know that we have solemnized marriage without conversion, as per the law of the land. And once the girl becomes the legal wife of the boy and starts living with him, she can then be converted to Muslim faith.]
Muqeem now gave us the second option under which he himself would secretly convert the Hindu girl into Islam at the unknown location in the presence of the selected people and perform the nikah.
Muqeem…. “Aisey ho sakta hai ki ladka-ladki ek jagah jama ho, kahin bhi. Wahan main pahuch jaoo. Wo mere paas aa gaye ladka-ladki ya main unke paas chala jaunga. Phir main unke apne haath par haraab bharke unko main convert karwa dunga. Jo Islam ke kanoon hai, farz hai wo unko bata dunga. Qabool karwa dunga. Aur phir wahin nikah pawda dunga. Aur main jo likh kar certificate dunga ki mainey tumhey convert kar liya hai aur nikah padwa diya. Phir jo hai meri pakad hai. Tumney kaisey padaya nikah inka.? Tumney kaisey certificate diya isko”?
Reporter…. “Nahin ye aap dono tareekey par tayyar hai?
[Muqeem told us that he is ready to convert Hindu girl into Islam and perform nikah at a secret location in the presence of selected people].
Maulana Muqeem now told us about how much a muslim cleric charges for conversion and nikah. He calls them “Wardi Wala”.
Muqeem…. “Jo wardi waley hotey hai”.
Reporter…. “Ji” ?
Muqeem…. “Jo wardi waley hotey hai. Jo 2 number keh lijiye. 11000, koi, 21000, 30,000 wo maangte hai”.
Reporter…. “Ye wardi waley.. police waley”?
Muqeem…. “Nahin-nahin. Humari niyat kharaab ho jaati hai bhai. Kaam to kar dengey. Kaam to ho jayega. Kharcha itna ayega”.
Reporter…. “Apko kitna nazar kar diya jaye”?
Muqeem… “Wo apki marzi hai. Mera kuch nahin hai”.
Reporter…. “Phir bhi ek thoda sa idea andaza” ?
Muqeem…. “Kuch nahin”.
Reporter…. “10,000, 15000” ?
Muqeem…. “Kuch nahin. Jo bhi aap chahyengey”.
[Muqeem commented on Muslim clerics by saying that they demand huge money for such kind of work. But he is not demanding anything from us. Whatever we’ll give him he would accept that.]
“My main work is conversion. I convert people to Islam. Through this work, I make my living and also run my Madarsa. Due to Love-Jihad law in Uttar Pradesh, I have presently suspended my conversion work for the time being. I earned Rs 35-40k from each conversion and nikah. I am travelling pan India for conversion and nikah. I am converting not only Hindus to Islam but also converting Christians and Jews to Islam. Recently I converted Christian into Islam in Bangalore. Through this, I earned Rs 1 lakh. Till date, I have done 300 conversions”. This is Maulana Altafur Rahman for you, who runs Masjid and Madarsa in another city of Uttar Pradesh.
We approached him after meeting Muqeem with the same fictitious deal that our Muslim nephew has fallen in love with a Hindu girl and wants to marry her. And for that we need his advice. Maulana Altafur Rahman candidly confessed that he does conversions pan India, and also perform nikah of interfaith couples. For our case, he said due to Love-Jihad law, his lawyer has advised him not to give any evidence in the form of conversion and nikah certificates. He also said that without converting Hindu girl into Islam, nikah is not possible.
Altaf…. “Doosrey mazhab mein nikah nahin hota hai. Isliye hum sabse pehley doosrey mazhab walon ko Islam mazhab main laaney ka system hai ek. Application lagana. Kalma padana.”
Reporter…. “Kya kara karke” ?
Altaf…. “Kalma padatey hai. Samjhatey bina kisi ki burai ke. Uske baad hum usko de dete hai certificate”.
Reporter…. “Conversion ka” ?
Altaf…. “ Haan conversion ka”.
Reporter…. “Nikah bhi karwa dete hai” ?
Altaf…. “Nikah bhi karwa dete hai. Court mein bhi karwa dete hai. Teenon kam karwa dete hai”.
Reporter…. “To ye abhi tak karwa rahe they” ?
Altaf…. “Abhi tak karwa raha tha main. Kyonki ye kanoon nikal gaya hai. Kanoon tak jaaney se pehley humarey saath koi badtameezi ho jaye. Hai hullad mach jaye. Us baat ke liye humein wakeel saheb ne mana kar diya hai. Ab nikah bhi padwatey hai to bas bina kagaz ke”.
[ Altaf told Tehelka that before love-jihad law in Uttar Pradesh, he was converting people, conducting their nikah and performing their court marriages and issuing them certificates. But after this law, his lawyer has advised him not to issue any certificate to avoid any controversy. Altaf also told us that a Muslim cannot marry a Hindu without converting them to Islam].
Now Altaf told Tehelka that after embracing Islam and marrying a Muslim boy, if girl starts showing aversion to Islam, then her punishment is death. Her head should be chopped off.
Altaf…. “Islam qbool karne ke baad agar nafrat ke saath keh de ye deen mujhey pasand nahin hai. To uski saza hai gardan uda di jayee”.
Reporter…. “ To kaun katega gardan” ?
Altaf…. “Islami, Islami ya uski adalat”.
Altaf…. “ Shauhar nahin. Agar shauhar karega to mulzim ho jayega na wo to. Hindustan ke kanoon se bhi aur shariat se bhi. Saza-e-maut jo hai wo dene ka akhtiyaar wo qazi ko hai.
Reporter…. “Aap bhi to qazi hai”?
Altaf…. “Nahin.. main to registered hoon na. Yahan dekhiye hum Islamic mulk mein nahin hai. Agar hum Islamic mulk main hotey to humara faisla chalta”.
[Altaf brazenly told Tehelka that if a girl after marrying and converting to Islam, starts detesting the religion, then her punishment is death. Her head should be chopped off. However he hastened to add that only the sharia court qazi of any Islamic country has the right to pronounce such judgement.]
Altaf agreed to do counselling of a Hindu girl so that she converts to Islam before marrying the Muslim boy. In this instance too, a fictitious nephew of the Tehelka reporter wanted to marry a Hindu girl. Altaf said that he will use some Taweez [amulet] for the girl so that she starts liking Islam religion and converts to Islam of her own free will.
Reporter….. “Haan to us ladki ko mein aapke paas pehley bhej deta hoon. Aisa ho jaye ki poori tareekey se Islam mein aa jaye. Aap jahan aisa kar de.”
Altaf…. “Baat karte hai”.
Reporter…. “ Ho jayega sir zahan aisa” ?
Altaf…. “ Mujhey poori ummeed hai allah par. Kuch pad kar bhi khila dengey. Meethey mein. Par usmein ladki ko ladki ke maa ka naam yaad hona zaroori hai. Charon ka naam rahega na to kuch ruhon ka bhi asar rehta hai. Hum sab ke saath karte hai. Bade-bade tilak dhaari aatey hai mere paas”.
[ Altaf said he will do counseling of the Hindu girl to become Muslim. He will also use Taweez [amulet] which make her inclined towards Islam.]
Altaf challenged love jihad law of Uttar Pradesh and told Tehelka that no work will stop no matter how many laws you make.
Reporter…. “Ye jo love jihad kanoon ban gaya Uttar Pradesh mein. To ab iski wajah se aagey bhi nahin ho payega” ?
Altaf…. “Kaam sarey honey hai. Kaam sarey honey hai. Chahe kitney hi kanoon bana do”.
[ Altaf said no work will stop. No matter how many laws are made.]
Altaf said because of the love jihad law, he will give us backdated papers of our nephew’s inter-faith fictitious marriage.
Altaf…. “Is waqt jo hai loha garam hai. Loha jab garam ho chot ka asar jaldi hota hai. Jab loha thanda ho jata hai na to chot ka asar utna nahin hota. Is waqt usey taalney main fayeda hai. Baaki main kaam kar dunga apka. Jitna hum back date main hum apko kagaz dengey utna aap usko court mein istemal karengey. Utna apko fayeda rahega.”
Reporter…. “Achcha to back date ke kaagaz mil jayengey” ?
Reporter…. “Conversion aur nikah dono ka” ?
Altaf…. “Haan conversion aur nikah dono ka”.
Altaf confessed that carrying out conversions and performing nikahs were main parts of his occupation, through which he supported his family and also ran his Madarsa. He admitted that so far he had done 300 conversions in India.
Altaf…. “Barhaal mein conversion bhi karta hoon. Main nikah bhi padata hoon. Door-door tak hindustan ke har soobey main jaata hoon”.
Reporter…. “To aap conversion Hindu ladko ka bhi karte hai ya ladkiyon ka bhi” ?
Altaf…. “Sabka karte hai”.
Reporter…. “Jo bhi aa jaye” ?
Altaf…. “Jo bhi aata hai, chahe isai ho, yahudi ho, irani ho. Abhi mainey ek isai ko kiya hai Bangalore mein. Usney kum se kum mere oopar ek lakh rupay kharch kiya hai.”
Reporter…. “To apne kitney conversion karwa diye hongey abhi tak” ?
Altaf…. “300 se zyada”.
[ Altaf admitted that converting people to Islam was his main occupation.]
Altaf said that because of that love jihad law in Uttar Pradesh, he has temporarily suspended his practice of coverting people.
Reporter…. “To conversion kis type ka karate hai” ?
Altaf…. “Musalman banata hoon”.
Reporter… “Achcha. Hindu se”?
Altaf…. “Abhi love-jihad ka chakkar chal raha hai abhi isliye thoda sa ruk gaya hoon abhi. Mera main kaam wahi hai. Usi se main apna ghar bhi chalata hoon. Madarsa bhi”.
[Altaf disclosed that because of the love-jihad controversy, he has put on hold his practice of converting people to Islam. Otherwise converting people is his main occupation, which helps him run his house and Madarsa.]
It also came to light that Altaf has no problem in taking our black money from South Africa and Dubai for his Madarsa.
Reporter… “Meri ek baat samajh lijiye. Wo bank ke through nahin dena chah rahe hai”.
Altaf…. “Koi baat nahin”.
Reporter…. “Unka wo legal money nahin hai”.
Altaf…. “Theek hai”.
Reporter….. “Jaisey wo black money hota hai na us type ka hai. To wo bank ke through dena nahin chah rahe hai. Wo dena India mein, rehte wo South Africa mein”.
Altaf…. “India mein dena chah rahe hai na”?
Reporter…. “Aur ek Dubai mein. To us paisey ko aap videshi mulk se Hindustan main kaisey laoogey” ?
Altaf….. “Hum jaa kar lekar ayengey na. Hum koi rasta nikalengey”.
Reporter….. “Aap aisey koi paisa thodi laogey hawai jahaaz mein. Pakde jaogey custom mein pakdey jaogey”.
Altaf…. “Kitna paisa dengey” ?
Reporter…. “India ke hisaab se se hoga 10-20 lakh rupay”.
Altaf….. “Kuch nahin hota 10-20 lakh rupya. Aap kya samajh rahe ho. Crore rupay bhi dega to hum lekar ayengey”.
Reporter…. “To aap kaisey laogey tareeka to bata do” ?
Altaf…. “Uska tareeqa to saath ki saath batayega.. jo humarey aadmi hai wo unse mashwira lengey.. dekhiye business hai unka. Imran hai Thailand mai uska wo ladki lekar aaya nikah padaya mainey. Wo poori duniya mein jaata hai business karney jeans-pants ka. Wo aisa taana-baana bunega. Apna business dikha kar lekar ayega.”
[Altaf had no hesitation in accepting the black money for his Madarsa. He also told how he would weave a story to hoodwink the authorities and bring the money from foreign shores to India.]
While reacting to Tehelka’s reality check-cum-investigation on conversion, renowned Islamic scholar Dr. Maulana Maqsood-ul-Hasan Qasmi described conversion for marriage as illegal in Islam. According to him, Islam doesn’t endorse conversion for marriage. He said if someone has converted to Islam of her own free will without any force much before their marriage then it is legal in Islam. But if someone is getting converted just for the sake of marriage and that too just a few days before tying the knot, then such act is un-Islamic and against the law of the land. Reacting to what Muqeem and Altaf said during the Tehelka investigation, Maulana Maqsood said, “Such people are insane. They don’t have any knowledge of Islam. And they call themselves Maulvis.”
Khalid Saleem, another renowned Islamic scholar, while reacting to Tehelka’s expose, said, “Such people who talk about hitting women if they refuse to convert to Islam and talk about chopping of their head if they start disliking Islam should be sent to jail immediately. They are not only un-Islamic but anti-nationals too. Islam is a religion of peace. It does not endorse violence in any form”.