What's the Need For a Law?: The Many Contentions of Oppn Parties Against the Triple Talaq Bill
Several parties, including Congress and Trinamool Congress (TMC), have questioned why the law is even necessary considering that the Supreme Court has already invalidated instant triple talaq.
A Muslim woman walks in a market, near Jama Masjid in New Delhi (Representational Image: PTI)
As the Lok Sabha braces itself to take up the Triple Talaq bill on Thursday, it is important to know the key points of contention that have been raised by the Opposition against the proposed law.
The first point of contention raised by various opposition parties, including the Congress, Trinamool Congress (TMC), Biju Janata Dal (BJD), YSR Congress Party (YSRCP), questions the grounds which necessitate the legislation considering that the Supreme Court had already invalidated instant triple talaq.
Alleging that the issue was being politicised by the BJP, opposition parties have said that there is no need to bring a law to criminalise instant triple talaq, which has been held to be constitutionally invalid and void ab initio — having no effect.
According to them, there is no need for a law to create an offence out of it if the pronouncement of talaq itself has no effect on the validity of a marriage.
The opposition parties have also objected to criminalising an issue, which is essentially civil in nature. Marriage is a civil institution and thus, they argue, bringing penal provisions in any aspect of marriage could have a devastating effect on matrimonial relationships among Muslims.
Questioning the three-year jail term for husbands, the parties have stated that this will lead to the victimisation of Muslims and makes them vulnerable to prosecutions.
They've also been pointed out that although the amended legislation makes provisions for subsistence allowance, a man lodged in jail cannot be ordered to provide for his wife and children. They say penal provision itself defeats the purpose of the bill.
On the other hand, the government has defended the bill in its current form, saying it will promote gender equality and protect the rights of Muslim women.
Various central ministers have also gone public saying Triple Talaq Bill is in tandem with the Prime Minister's new motto of "Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas, Sabka Vishwas".
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