Congress may oppose triple talaq bill

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The West Bengal subcommittee of the Muslim Personal Law Board is urging the government to consult with Islamic scholars about the proposed bill, which they say would otherwise create discord. Many in the government and opposition have termed it as a progressive bill which fulfills the demands of basic human right for the Indian Muslim women.

The new law would make it a non-bailable crime that would carry a three-year jail term. The apex court by a majority of 3:2 had ruled that the practice of divorce through triple talaq among Muslims is "illegal" and "unconstitutional".

The bill termed as the "Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2017" seeks to criminalise the practice of instant divorce in Islam.

The nod paves the way for its introduction during ongoing Parliament session.

"The Supreme Court had banned triple talaq in the light of Quran". Judges agreed with Muslim women that "triple talaq", often delivered by their husbands over Skype or WhatsApp, violates their right to equality and leaves them destitute.

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Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad refused to give details of the Bill at a media briefing on the ground that Parliament was in session. The bill is yet to be made public but we want it to be just and fair. This is a serious issue which must be dealt seriously as many women are affected by the triple talaq. "There should be a provision that the person giving triple talaq should not be sent to jail immediately, and the path of mediation should be opted", she said.

"The community is indulging in argument but that doesn't mean we will give up our constitutional and legal entitlement".

"If we live in a democracy, then we should have been given an opportunity. So, this kind of Personal Law Board argument for any kind of reform is not accepted", the activist said.

Last month, the Union government had written to all the States for their comments as it plans to introduce the Bill in the current session of Parliament.

"India's criminal laws and its enforcement systems have already resulted in the disproportionate and mass incarceration of Muslim, Adivasi and Dalit men". It is not the matter of BJP, Congress or any other political parties. "They haven't solved it, that is why lot of politics is being done over the issue". The passing of bill and implementation of it will set the future discourse of the triple talaq.

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