The TimesDecember 22, 2006
Brolly to rescue of veiled wife

David Sanderson

LONDON A veiled Muslim woman who refused to show her face in court because she would have to be questioned by a male barrister agreed to a very British solution — a brolly.

Shereen Lohar, 21, was applying in the High Court for a declaration of nullity over a marriage, which she said had been forced on her.

Solicitors acting for Ms Lohar had successfully applied to the Family Division for her case to be heard by a female judge, but Ms Lohar refused to lift her veil because her barrister was a man.

The barrister, Teetha Gupta, came to the rescue of the case, which resulted in a successful application for a declaration that her marriage was invalid, by offering his umbrella as a screen.

Ms Lohar raised it so that her face was obscured from him, but was visible to the judge, Mrs Justice Macur.