Private Lab Confirms Woman Miscarried While in Custody Under UP’s New ‘Love Jihad’ Law
A private lab confirms a 22-year-old Uttar Pradesh woman suffered a miscarriage while being held in a shelter home following her husband’s arrest for ‘love jihad.’ The lab’s statement supports the woman’s account and contradicts quotes from the U.P. State Commission for Protection of Child Rights, which claimed the fetus was still viable.
This is the fifth ‘love jihad’ case since the U.P. government’s ordinance was passed in late November, but the first such case in which a pregnant woman’s health is in question.
“We found that the woman had had a miscarriage. There is an infection in her uterus which should be treated to avoid further complications,” Dr. PS Sisodia, the doctor who performed the woman’s recent ultrasound, told Times Of India. In return, the acting chief superintendent of the Moradabad district hospital said, “The reports provided by ultrasonologist Dr. RP Mishra clearly said the fetus was visible but heartbeat was not there.”
Members of fringe right-wing group Bajrang Dal earlier this month accosted the woman’s husband and brother while they were trying to get the marriage registered and handed them over to police. Under the new Uttar Pradesh Prohibition of Unlawful Conversion of Religion Ordinance, all religious conversions done for the purpose of marriage are nullified. However, the woman told journalists that her marriage took place several months before the ordinance became law. According to NDTV, she says, “I am an adult, I am 22 years old. I got married of my own free will on the 24th of July. This is the fifth month that we have been married.”
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After her husband and brother’s arrest, the woman was held in a Nari Niketan — a state-run shelter home for women. There, the woman alleges, she was tortured. In a video uploaded by journalist Kanwardeep Singh, the woman says, “For three days, I felt an ache in my belly. They did not pay attention. When my condition grew worse, they took me to the hospital. The doctors gave me an injection. I started bleeding heavily afterwards, and they gave me medicines and injections then. Yesterday, I gave my statement at the court. Afterwards, I began feeling worse. I have suffered a miscarriage. … I was given the injections, then I suffered the miscarriage.”
The woman’s husband and brother were held in jail for 13 days, and released on Saturday, 19th December, after an order from the U.P. chief judicial magistrate.