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Triple Talaq bill: Opposition to meet to decide on stand in Rajya Sabha

Written by  Published in Opinion Thursday, 03 August 2017 06:59

The proposed law, which stipulated up to three years of jail and a penalty for violators, was passed amidst concern from opposition members that it was criminalising what was essentially a civil procedure, and that it could be misused.

Opposition parties such as the Congress, DMK, Left and Trinamool Congress will go into a huddle on Tuesday to decide their stand in the Rajya Sabha on the bill to criminalise the practice of instant triple talaq.

Several opposition parties had demanded amendments and sought a review by a standing committee of Parliament before the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill was passed by a voice vote in the Lower House last Thursday.

The bill will now be sent to the Rajya Sabha for passage before it is forwarded to the President for signing it into law.

“We will take a collective decision after talking to other political parties,” a senior leader of the Congress party said.

Sources said that opposition parties may avoid taking an individual stance vis-à-vis the triple talaq bill as it might send a wrong message when the government has pitched the bill as a major step for women rights and empowerment.

Also, pushing the bill to a standing committee can also be seen as an effort to delay its passage.

The opposition parties in the Lok Sabha, however, had pointed out what they think as loopholes in the historic bill.

The proposed law, which stipulated up to three years of jail and a penalty for violators, was passed amidst concern from opposition members that it was criminalising what was essentially a civil procedure, and that it could be misused.

Some Muslim women’s groups have also raised concerns about “maintenance” if the husband is sent to jail.

The bill seeks to “ensure the larger constitutional goals of gender justice and gender equality of married Muslim women and help sub-serve their fundamental rights of non-discrimination and empowerment”, Union law minister Ravi Shankar Prasad told the Lower House.

The bill will only be applicable to instant triple talaq or “talaq-e-biddat” and gives power to a woman to approach a magistrate seeking “subsistence allowance” for her and her minor children. A woman can also seek the custody of her minor children.

Under the proposed law, instant triple talaq in any form — spoken, in writing or by electronic means such as email, SMS and WhatsApp —is illegal and void.

Though the Congress supported the bill, it wanted the government to refer the proposed legislation to a parliamentary standing committee for wider consultations and broader consensus on the move.

The Communist Party of India (Marxist), Rashtriya Janata Dal, Samajwadi Party and Indian Union Muslim League were among those that endorsed the Congress’ stand.

Talaq-e-biddat is banned in 22 Muslim-majority countries, including Pakistan and ultra-conservative Saudi Arabia. Muslim men in India can still divorce using two other forms of talaq that have a three-month cooling off period. Source : ht

 

 

 

 

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Read 433 times Last modified on Monday, 01 January 2018 09:42

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