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Author O Sruthi On The Kerala Story: Conversion A Fact, Cannot Be Denied

Amid the raging political storm over The Kerala Story, O Sruthi, author of 'Story of A Reversion', said objections to the film are not well founded.

General News
| Written By
Abheet Sajwan

Image: Victim of forced conversion speaks to Republic (Republic)

With the trailer of The Kerala Story triggering a massive political storm, O Sruthi, author of the book Story of A Reversion: How I converted to Islam and returned to Sanathana Dharma, said objections to the film are not well founded. "We have seen the trailer of the movie only and not the complete film, so how can people object to it even before it has been released...I experienced this conversion 10 years back," O Sruthi told Republic in an exclusive conversation. "I became a victim of radicalisation and I went on to accept Islam legally in a conversion centre in Kerala itself, and at the time I was radicalised, my thinking was just similar to ISIS people and groups."   

The Kerala Story is a film directed by Sudipto Sen which deals with stories of women from Kerala being trafficked to be radicalised and become members of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). The trailer of the film says nearly 32,000 women have been trafficked from the state so far. 

Conversion in Kerala a fact: O Sruthi 

Talking about the core of the themes that form part of The Kerala Story, O Sruthi said, "It is wrong to say conversion is not happening in Kerala. From 1999 to 2023, we at Aarsha Vidya Samajan brought back nearly 7,000 people who were converted, radicalised and indoctrinated. So, it is clear conversion is happening and in different ways." 

"Love Jihadis are there, Land Jihadis are there, Money Jihadis are there and in different ways they are taking in people to establish the Islamic world, and it is a fact. Nimisha Fathima, Sonia Sebastian, Merrin, and one more, four Indian girls are in an Afghan jail. They all are victims of Love Jihad, radicalisation, indoctrination, how can it be denied when we have so much evidence?" O Sruthi asked.   

Sruthi shares her story of radicalisation

On being asked about her story of radicalisation, O Sruthi said, "I lacked knowlege about my Dharma, Sanatan Dharma, and they used that vacuum, my classmates were the very first influencers, after that my colleagues, they used to ask me about my mother's religion, and it made me confused. After that, they started criticising my religion to generate an inferiority complex to make me feel about how barbaric religion I have been born and brought up in.” 

“Afterwards they inject their ideology in a beautiful way that anyone would say that yes they are right. That way I was being guided. For purdah they told me that it is for women’s protection. I came to know that all this is not right after what had happened,” she said.

No support from Kerala govt

Sruthi said, “We here at Aarsha Vidya Samajam call this process of conversion as Love Trap Jihad. I can say it very frankly say this because I have witnessed many cases.” She said she has not found any support from the state government of Kerala. Meanwhile, the ruling CPI(M) and Congress have called the film a piece of propaganda. The BJP, on the other hand, has called the film a work of art. 

#TheKeralaStory | We had not received any support from the state government: Sruthi O, Author, alleged victim of forced conversion #LIVE, speaks to Republic on 'The Kerala Story.'

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Tom Vadakkan, a BJP spokesperson, "Which CM comments on a film and calls it propaganda without watching it?" "You can't just say a film is false or is just a propaganda without watching it," Vadakkan said, adding these people did not come forward when the 'baseless' BBC documentary was released which tried to paint a false picture of the Gujarat riots.  

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