Mumbai resident Fathima Quaid Zohar Challawalla has filed a writ petition in the Supreme Court against traditional practices of the Dawoodi Bohra community, in which custody of male children above the age of 7 is automatically granted to the father. The petitioner has alleged that this is a violation of Article 14 and 15 of the Constitution.
The plea further alleges that the transfer of custody of children within the community follows no due process of law and is inherently discriminatory towards women.
She has also claimed that her own son had been forcibly relocated to his father's house, despite the father engaging in an illicit relationship with another woman and disregarding the welfare of the child. Challawalla has urged the court to take action against such practices as they are not essential to Islam and infringe on the rights of women and children.