In my opinion, there is a tendency for judges who are Muslim to consider that they have a duty to protect their faith. There appears to be a pattern in this direction.
As I understand Islam, in all my years in religious organizations, judges must be unbiased.
This is similar to all other religious teachings. When Muslim judges and non Muslim judges give different judgments in matters involving Islamic tenets, it is confusing for lay people.
I hope all judges will decide all cases according to what they think is just, regardless of their views about their own faith.
When the civil High Court judge, in giving joint custody of the two children to husband and wife, ordered Shamala Sathiaseelan not to expose her two children to her own religion of Hinduism, the judge did not cite any civil law authority for such a decision.
When the government Islamic religious authority converted her own infant children to Islam without her consent, and the civil High Court refused to intervene telling her instead to submit to that religious department for assistance, it was the last straw for her.
If she committed contempt of court by leaving the country with her children, the above can be considered strong mitigating factors.
The husband who deserted her was being given special consideration because he was a Muslim.
Both the High Court and the government religious authorities did not give recognition to her equal rights as a mother and a woman.
She appealed to the Court of Appeal who referred the matter to the Federal Court. She hoped she would get justice. But the Federal Court has shut her out completely.
If she was in contempt of court, that offence must be considered separately.
It did not mean that she should be denied relief in the substantive matters she complained about.