The UAE government has issued a birth certificate to a nine-month old girl who was born to an Indian Hindu father and a Muslim mother -- both Indian expats -- setting aside the country's marriage rules for expatriates during the Year of Tolerance, according to a media report.
The UAE has declared 2019 as the Year of Tolerance to highlight UAE as an exemplary example of a tolerant nation, bridging the communication gap between different cultures and build an environment where people accept each other as they are.
As per the marriage rules for expatriates in UAE, a Muslim man can marry a non-Muslim woman but a Muslim woman cannot marry a non-Muslim man.
Sharjah-based expat Kiran Babu and Sanam Saboo Siddique, who got married in Kerala in 2016, faced an unusual situation when their daughter was born in July 2018, the Khaleej Times reported.
"I have an Abu Dhabi visa. I get my insurance coverage there and got my wife admitted to Medeor 24X7 Hospital in the emirate. But after the baby's delivery, the birth certificate was rejected as I am a Hindu," Mr Babu said.
"I then applied for a no-objection certificate through the court. The trial went on for four months but my case was rejected," he added.
Mr Babu said that since his daughter had no legal documents, he pinned his hopes on the amnesty period.
"Those days were stressful and the amnesty was a window of hope. The Indian Embassy helped with the provision of an outpass. But the baby was denied immigration clearance as there was no data or registration number to prove her birth," he said.
Mr Babu said Indian Embassy counsellor M Rajamurugan supported them throughout the process.
"The judicial department made my case an exception. I was told that from now on, in such cases, we have to put together a request letter, get it approved by the chief justice, and take it to the health authority for the issuance of a birth certificate," he said.
Mr Babu again went to court and, this time, his case was approved.
The couple was given the birth certificate of their daughter Anamta Aceline Kiran on April 14, a day before the Hindu festival of Vishu.
"I am told that this is the first case where the rule has been amended," he said.
Mr Rajamurugan said the ground-breaking ruling from the court will serve as a precedent for future cases.