ALSO BY

Let all enter and leave religion freely

I would not discuss my neighbour's dog or cat with him or her until and unless it deprives me or my family members of our rightful enjoyment of our property. Similarly, I would not want to talk about another person's religion until and unless it seriously undermines my birth (and sometimes death) rights.

Moorthy's case, apart from proving the inadequacy of Islamic law (as it is practised in this country) to safeguard the rights of non-Muslims, has also highlighted the plight of thousands of 'hasty converts' and 'converts of convenience' in this country who are trapped, by the hand of law, in a religion they no longer wish to practise.

In all fairness these people should be allowed to go back to their former religion. I am sure such a move would help instil the confidence of non-Muslims in Islam as a just and fair religion. Of course the authorities, for fear of opening the floodgates, could confine such freedom to converts from other faiths.

To draw from an analogy, marriage is considered sacred by most religions. And yet if my wife wants to leave me for another man, I might at first try to counsel her against breaking up the family, but if she still insists, I would finally let her go.

If I use the force of law to keep her 'imprisoned' as my wife for the rest of her life, could I expect her to be faithful to me? Could I be still proud of her? Wouldn't it be 'good riddance of bad rubbish' as far as I am concerned?