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Triple Talaq Ban in India: Union Cabinet Passes Bill Making the Practice a Criminal Offence

The BMMA celebrates its victory over the much-debated practice of instant divorce

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Triple Talaq continues to plague lives of Muslim women, VOA News
Triple Talaq continues to plague lives of Muslim women, VOA News
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  • Supreme court had ruled that the practice of triple talaq as illegal in August 2017.
  • On December 15, the Union Cabinet passed a bill which would make it a criminal offence
  • .The bill recommends a sentence of imprisonment for three years in case of a violation.
  • The bill also makes provisions for “subsistence allowance” for the women divorced through triple talaq.

On December 15, the Union Cabinet of India cleared a draft legislation, which would make the controversial practice of triple talaq a criminal offence in India, a violation of which may result in imprisonment for a period of three years for the husband. The recently approved bill, deemed as the ‘Muslim Women’s Protection of Rights on Marriage Bill’, was framed by a group of ministers including the External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, the Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, and the Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, and was headed by the Home Minister Rajnath Singh.

What is triple talaq

The practice of triple talaq, or talaq-e-biddat, is a Islamic ritual through which a man might divorce his wife by uttering the word ‘talaq’, that is, the Arabic word for ‘divorce’, three times. The controversial practice, which dates back to Islamic scriptures of the 8th century AD, was a common one among the Muslim population in India, often enacted through letters, emails, text messages, Skype and Whatsapp.

The Supreme Court of India bans the practice of triple talaq
The practice of triple talaq still continues, in spite of the ban, VOA News

Triple Talaq Ban

On August 22, 2017, the Supreme Court of India had banned the archaic practice of triple talaq, after a long and hard legal battle fought by the Bharatiya Muslim Mahila Andolan (BMMA), also known as the Indian Muslim Women’s Movement. “Triple talaq is against the basic tenets of the Holy Quran and consequently, it violates Shariat … What is held to be bad in the Holy Quran cannot be good in Shariat and, in that sense, what is bad in theology is bad in law as well,” they had declared, making India the 23rd nation to ban the practice of unilateral divorce, after Pakistan, United Arab Emirates and Egypt. Many non-governmental Islamic organizations, along with certain clerics had opposed the verdict, on the grounds that it was an infringement of their right to religion, which is ensured by Article 25 of the Indian Constitution. The Supreme Court, however, had decided to uphold Article 14 of the Constitution, which grants every citizen equality before the law. The verdict had met with mixed reactions among the people of India, attracting applause as well as apprehension all over the country.

The Supreme Court of India bans the practice of triple talaq
Women can now demand subsistence allowance for themselves and minor children, VOA News

However, in spite of the Supreme Court verdict, there have been reports of instant divorces performed through the process of oral declaration, as many continued to ignore the various advisories issued by the government.
The new bill approved by the government also makes provisions for Muslim Women to demand “subsistence allowance” for herself and her minor children from her husband, in case she feels victimised by the now illegal practice of triple talaq.

 

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‘Padmaavat’ producers move SC against ban by some states

Rajasthan, Haryana, Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh have banned the movie citing law and order issues. 

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Deepika Padukone in Padmavati. Image:Intagram
  • Supreme court agreed to hear producers’ plea regarding the ban of ‘Padmavat’
  • The movie is banned in many states, which may mean heavy losses for the producers

The Supreme Court today agreed to hear the plea of producers of controversial Bollywood movie Padmaavat against the ban imposed on its release by various state governments.

Padmavat has faced many controversies prior to its release. @filmpadmavati.
Padmavat has faced many controversies prior to its release. @filmpadmavati.

You may also like : 5 Reasons Why you Can’t Miss to Watch First Day, First Show of movie Padmavati

A bench comprising Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud considered the submission of the counsel of the producer that the matter be heard urgently in view of the ban on its release by various state governments.

Rajasthan, Haryana, Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh have banned the movie citing law and order issues.

Padmavat is set to release on 25th January. IANS