New Delhi: The Lok Sabha on Thursday passed the Triple Talaq Bill- the practice of Muslim men instantly divorcing their wives by uttering ‘Talaq’ thrice – making it a punishable offence. The law gives three-year jail term for erring husbands.
The opposition led by Congress, stood against criminalising the Triple Talaq, arguing that it does not apply to any other religion.
Here are the highlights from the day:
The makes ‘triple tala’ an offence with a jail term of up to three years and a fine for the husband, and makes the woman entitled to maintenance.
The law also addresses “nikah halala”, a practice under which a divorced woman has to marry another man and consummate the marriage if she wants to remarry her husband.
The government introduced three changes in the revised law, to stop the misuse of the law. Under these, only a woman, or her close relative, can file a police case against her husband.
A second amendment allows her to drop the case if the couple reaches a compromise. A third says the magistrate can decide on the husband’s bail only after hearing the wife.
Here’s who said what:
Ravi Shankar Prasad, Law Minister
“The triple talaq bill, which seeks imprisonment for Muslim men accused of instant divorce, is not about politics but empowerment and justice for women.”
“Don’t weigh the bill on the scales of politics. The bill is about humanity and justice.”
“20 Islamic nations have banned instant triple talaq, then why can’t a secular nation like India? I request that this should not be looked through the prism of politics.”
Mallikarjun Kharge, Congress MP
“Several provisions of the bill are unconstitutional. The bill should be referred to a joint select committee of the two Houses for greater scrutiny.”
“If 1986 had the required power, then in 1986 Shah Bano wouldn’t have felt the need to knock on the SC’s door. People who say marriage is a contract then it (the contract) has to be ended on equal terms. To the people who are questioning the criminality of this bill. Even the Islamic jurisprudence termed it criminal. This bill was introduced with the intentions of providing justice and not with political motives.”
Sushmita Dev, Congress MP
“In the name of empowerment you (the government) has given nothing but a criminal case to women…the real purpose of the bill was not to empower Muslim women but to ‘penalise’ Muslim men.”
Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi, Union minister of minority affairs
“Acts like murder are against the law but people still commit such crime and hence there is provision for punishment.This is not to victimise anyone but to provide safety and protection to Muslim women. Terming triple talaq as a social evil, he said, the time has come to abolish it. Many Islamic nations have already made it illegal like Pakistan did in 1956 and Syria in 1953. The country runs on Constitution not by Shariat.”
Asaduddin Owaisi, AIMIM MP
“The government had not consulted any stakeholder on the bill. Leave alone those opposing it, those who are for it have also not been consulted.”
Sudip Bandyopadhyay, Trinamool Congress
“We also request the Triple Talaq Bill be sent to joint select committee, all opposition is of the same opinion.”
N K Premchandran, Revolutionary Socialist Party
Moving his statutory resolution opposing an ordinance issued earlier (which the bill seeks to replace), N K Premchandran said,”The bill is bad in law as it seeks to criminalise a ‘civil wrong’ and hence it should be referred to a select committee.”
Meenakshi Lekhi, BJP
“I would like to ask those opposing the triple talaq bill here that in which surah of the holy Quran is talaq-e-biddat mentioned? This is not a he vs. she issue, these issues are about human rights violation.”