Indian hockey captain Manpreet Singh's marriage to Malaysian Muslim girl Illi Najwa Anuar Husin Saddique seems to have stirred controversy as the Malaysian government has asked her to explain her religious status. The couple had tied the knot as per the Sikh customs on 16 December in Punjab and the pictures of their wedding were all over the internet.

Malaysian Muslim woman leave Islam to marry Indian hockey captain Manpreet Singh
Indian Hockey Captain Manpreet Singh, a Sikh, tied the knot with Malaysian Muslim woman Illi Najwa Anuar Husin Saddique on 16 December. ANI

Reacting to the marriage reports, Ahmad Marzuk Shaary, Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister's Department (Religious Affairs), told the reporters that the government is yet to get a full report on the wedding. "From the information, we have received so far, the woman is still considered a Muslim as there has been no application from her to change her religious status,"

No Application from her to Marry Overseas
Ahmad Marzuk Shaary claims that he read from the social media sites that the Indian hockey captain had converted to Islam, last year. He added, "We did not receive any application from her to marry overseas. From what I read on social media, the woman is still a Muslim and the bridegroom (Manpreet) converted to Islam last year."

'If she is still a Muslim, then she must repent'
"Currently, we are thinking positively that the woman is still a Muslim but the customs she went through there contradict our religion. If she is still a Muslim, then she must repent," FMT news quotes him as saying.

The woman is said to be a niece of the Unity Minister Datuk Halimah Mohamed Sadique. She had recently posted on her social media about travelling to India for her wedding following which her wedding pics had gone viral.

Halimah Statement on Conversion
However, Halimah's aide has reportedly released a statement supposedly written by Illi that she has not left Islam. "I apologise for my and Manpreet's ignorance. Manpreet converted to Islam last year.

"I have never changed my name nor my religion and my name will always be Illi Najwa Anuar Husin Saddique. His family has been calling me Navpreet since 2012 since it's difficult for them to call me by my real name," the Star website quotes her as saying.

The couple met for the first time in 2012 during India's hockey tour to Malaysia. Their friendship gradually turned into love. Manpreet and Illi were scheduled to marry before the Tokyo Olympics in 2020, but the plans went for a change to Covid-19 pandemic.