A MOTHER’S RIGHTS: No religious basis to convert baby

I READ the case of Indira Gandhi and her struggle to secure her right to live with her three children — Karan Dinish, 11, Tevi Darsiny, 12, and 1-year-old Prasana Diksa, who is still on breast milk.

The New Sunday Times reported that Indira, a kindergarten teacher, had been waiting for her baby girl in the compound of the Ipoh district police station, but her baby was not returned to her by her estranged husband, who has converted to Islam.

As a lecturer of Islamic theology and philosophy, I am of the view that K. Patmanathan, who is now known as Mohd Ridzuan Abdullah, should return Prasana Diksa to her mother. The Hindu mother has every right to look after the baby.

Islamic theology does not impose any religious duty on the father to take away the baby girl from her Hindu mother.

This baby should not be prohibited by her father from being breastfed by her mother. If he does, he is wrong and evil in Islamic theological view because Islam does not impose any religious duty on any baby regardless whether she was born to a Hindu or Muslim mother. Islam imposes Islamic religious duties upon mature men and women, not upon babies and children. Please let this baby girl be breastfed by her mother.


Some Muslims hold the view that when a husband or wife converts to Islam, he or she has the right in Islamic law to take the children with him or her and then convert the children to Islam. Islamic law does not say so.

The "Islamness" of the children is not taken into account in Islamic theology. Islamic theology will count on the "Islamness" of human beings who are mature.