Bill criminalising triple talaq introduced in Lok Sabha

Source: PTI | By I.G. Bhatkali | Published on 28th December 2017, 6:07 PM | National News |

New Delhi: The Central government today introduced the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage Bill) 2017 in the Lok Sabha for discussion.

The Bill aims to criminalise the practice of instant triple talaq, which the Supreme court had earlier deemed unconstitutional and arbitrary, while introducing a 3-year-long prison sentence along with a fine for anyone who uses triple talaq.

While the Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad insists that the law is meant for women's rights & justice & not regarding any prayer, ritual or religion, opposition leaders including Assaduddin Owaisi of the AIMIM and Bhartruhari Mahtab of the BJD have voiced their dislike of the bill for various reasons.

Owaisi says that the bill violates Article 15 and lacks legal coherence, while Mahtab is opposing it on grounds of 'internal contradictions', adding that the party is against the 3-year sentence provision.

Meanwhile, the Congress has come out in support of the Bill, but has expressed some reservations as to whether the burden of proof would fall on the wife and whether the wife would be given right to the husband's property or will she be abandoned.

The proposed law would only be applicable on instant triple talaq or "talaq-e-biddat" and give power to the victim to approach a magistrate seeking "subsistence allowance" for herself and minor children.

The woman can also seek the custody of her minor children from the magistrate who will take a final call on the issue.

Under the law, instant triple talaq in any form - spoken, in writing or by electronic means such as email, SMS and WhatsApp - would be bad or illegal and void.

According to the proposed law which would be applicable to the entire country except Jammu and Kashmir, giving instant talaq would attract a jail term of three years and a fine. It would be a non-bailable offence.


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