Court sets Aug 1 for unilateral conversion decision

Elill Easwaran

Loh Siew Hong is set to have her unilateral conversion case heard on August 1, hoping also to have laws contravening the Federal Court ruling on the subject be declared unconstitutional. – The Malaysian Insight file pic, May 17, 2022.

THE High Court in Kuala Lumpur will decide on August 1 whether single mother Loh Siew Hong will be granted leave for a judicial review of her children’s unilateral conversion to Islam.

Loh’s lawyer Srimurugan Alagan said the date was fixed during online proceedings today before judge Wan Ahmad Farid Wan Salleh.

“The proceedings today felt good and we expect a positive outcome on August 1.

“If the leave for her judicial review is granted, I expect the hearing by end of the year,” he told The Malaysian Insight.

He said he was confident because Loh’s case was about the unilateral conversion of minors. The Federal Court has previously ruled this practice is illegal in a landmark case brought by M. Indira Gandhi.

Loh filed her application for judicial review on March 25, naming the Perlis Registrar of Converts, Perlis Islamic Religious and Malay Customs Council, Perlis Mufti Mohd Asri Zainul Abidin and the state government as respondents.

She is seeking a declaration that her three children are Hindus, and that her former husband M. Nagahswaran did not have the legal capacity to allow the registrar to register their children as converts without her consent.

She is also seeking a declaration that her children, as minors, do not have the legal capacity to convert to Islam without her consent.

Additionally, she is seeking reversal of the children’s conversion to Islam dated July 7, 2020, and annulment of any associated registration as such.

Loh is also asking that applicable laws contravening the Federal Court ruling be declared unconstitutional.

On February 21, Loh obtained a court order compelling the Social Welfare Department to release her children into her care. – May 17, 2022.

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