The Deobandi fatwa cancelling the marriage of a Qatari Muslim for typing the word talaq thrice while chatting on Skype with his wife is shocking. Religious leaders should not mislead people by issuing such baseless fatwas. Such fatwas are not based on the Koran or the authentic teachings of the Prophet.
Divorce is not a trivial matter in Islam. When a man and woman have a dispute that can lead to a divorce and the man says talaq three times or more, it is considered the first time. If they patch up within three months, they can lead a normal life. If there is a dispute for the second time and the husband pronounces talaq thrice, it is considered the second utterance of talaq. Again, they can reconcile within three months. Only when the husband says talaq for the third time, it is a divorce. The husband should pronounce talaq in the presence of two witnesses. And the woman should undergo iddah (waiting period) of three months before marrying again.
It is unfortunate that a section of misguided Muslims say the Shariah, as interpreted by Imam Abu Hanifa, is medieval and archaic. These upholders of ‘modern Islamic' law condemn triple talaq (which the Imam approves). Triple talaq is not specifically prohibited as in the case of “ila,” “zahir” or “tahlil” forms of divorce. The difference between the “talak-e-ahsan” and triple talaq is akin to the difference between the curing of a disease through ‘oral therapy' and ‘surgery' — depending on the circumstances of the case.