PETALING JAYA: An Islamic human rights group has decried an appeal court decision to reinstate a 37-year-old woman as a Muslim, saying it ran contrary to Quranic teaching and a ruling by the Federal Court.
Sisters in Islam said the Court of Appeal’s decision contradicted a verse in the Quran that there was no compulsion in religion.
“The verse clearly recognises freedom of religion and has been widely interpreted to mean that no one can be forced to embrace Islam,” SIS said in a statement.
It said the Federal Court had made it clear in a previous conversion case that any conversion of a minor required the consent of both parents.
The group said the Selangor Islamic Religious Council (Mais) “did not reflect compassion and tolerance” in appealing against a High Court declaration that the woman was not a Muslim.
The woman had said she was born into the Hindu faith but while still a child was converted to Islam unilaterally by her mother in 1991, while her parents were in the midst of a divorce.
The woman said her mother and stepfather allowed her to continue practising the Hindu faith. She was granted a declaration by the High Court in Shah Alam in 2021 that she was not a Muslim.
An appeal by Mais to the Court of Appeal succeeded in reversing the decision.