Malaysian Woman's Bid to Stop Her Son's Conversion to Islam Receives Temporary Boost

March 30, 2007

Source: International Herald Tribune

Wire Service: AP

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia: A Malaysian court on Friday temporarily forbade an ethnic Indian Muslim from converting his 1-year-old son to Islam, giving some respite to the man's Hindu wife who is trying to block him from changing their son's religion, media reports said.

The case has highlighted sensitive issues of race and religion among Malaysia's non-Muslim ethnic minorities, who, rights groups say, are facing an erosion of their rights.

The Court of Appeal ruled Friday that Muhammad Shafi Saravanan Abdullah — who converted from Hinduism to Islam — will have to wait for the apex Federal Court to hear the appeal by his wife, R. Subashini, before he can convert their son to Islam, the national news agency Bernama reported.

Subashini, 28, submitted her petition to the court on Friday. No date has been set for a hearing.