Janmabhumi, the BJP mouthpiece in Kerala, allegedly forced a sub-editor to put in her papers after the management found out she intended to convert to Christianity, the religion of her husband.
Sreedevi Nair resigned from the daily on October 1, two days before her baptism. She was married to a Christian as per the Special Marriages Act before joining the Kochi unit of the newspaper as a probationary sub-editor on March 15, 2009.
"I had told the management about my inter-caste marriage at the time of joining. Then, they did not find anything wrong with it. However, during the duty hours of September 30, managing director Kummanam Rajashekharan called me to inquire about my decision to get converted. He then informed me that it was not possible for a converted person to continue with the newspaper, especially when Hindu organisations have been campaigning against 'love jehad'," Sreedevi told The Indian Express.
Sreedevi said Rajashekharan might have come to know about her conversion from some other quarters although she wanted to inform all after completing the church formalities before the conversion. She, however, did not make any reference to the incident in her resignation letter.
"We did not ask her to quit. She voluntarily resigned as she considered faith in Christianity more important than the job. The journalist is trying to malign the newspaper after her resignation. We had given her job knowing about her inter-caste marriage. I am personally against conversion," said editor Leela Menon.
Sreedevi said Menon too had told her to scout for another job as it would be tough for her to continue in the paper post-conversion. "Rajashekharan even asked me whether I could get my husband converted into Hinduism and have the marriage performed in a temple," she added.
However, Rajashekharan said, "She voluntarily quit from the daily. Janmabhumi has in its pay roll persons belonging to all religions."