Man arrested for pressuring wife to ‘adapt to his culture’


A man was arrested under the Madhya Pradesh Freedom of Religion Act, 1968 for allegedly pressuring his wife to “adapt to his culture, learn Urdu and Arabic languages”.

The arrest was made under the provisions of the MP Dharma Swatantraya Act 1968. Madhya Pradesh is among the states that are bringing in a law against “love jihad”, against “forcible conversion” of Hindu women after their marriage to Muslim men.

The woman, born into a Hindu family, had run off from home and married Irshad Khan in 2018 by Islamic rituals. On Saturday, she returned to her parents, saying she was “being regularly tortured by him (Irshad) to force me to adapt his culture and also learn Urdu and Arabic language”.

“Unable to bear the torture, I’ve returned to my parents’ house and will not return to him. I made a big mistake in leaving my house two years back and marrying him,” the woman reportedly said. 

Bharat Dubey, Sub-Divisional Officer of Police (SDOP), Dhanpur, told reporters: “On November 27, she went back to her father›s home. Khan came to the police alleging that her wife has been forcefully confined there. Later the woman and her parents came to the police and complain that she will not stay with Khan as he used to torture him.”

Dubey said that the woman, a Hindu, has lodged a complaint, stating that the man, Irshad Khan, harassed her and his family members and was allegedly pressurising her to adapt to their culture and learn Urdu and Arabic languages.

A case has been registered under 498 A and sections 3, 4, and 5 of the MP Religion Freedom Act 1968 against the person.

Madhya Pradesh Home Minister Narottam Mishra had recently announced that the state government will bring a bill against ‘love jihad’ in the next Assembly session that will have the provision of five years of rigorous imprisonment.