Activists suggest changes to triple talaq law

Say Bill lacks a holistic approach on gender justice

The Bhartiya Muslim Mahila Andolan (BMMA) that has been on the forefront of the battle against triple talaq is of a view that a range of changes are required in the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2017 that will be tabled at the Lok Sabha next week.

The Bill, say BMMA members, lacks a holistic approach on gender justice and leaves aside the problems such as polygamy, age of marriage and ‘halala’ (a practice where a woman is made to do a consummated nikaah with another man in order to go back to her former husband).

“After such a long fight, it is a very big development in terms of having legislation. But we were hopeful that the Bill would be much more comprehensive,” said Noorjehan Safia Niaz, co-founder of the BMMA that has now called for the Bill to be referred to the Standing Committee of Parliament so that various gender-just provisions were included in it.

In a list of changes, the members said that the purpose of this Bill was gender justice and criminalisation in itself could not serve this objective. “We recognise the importance of deterrence in law and demand that the deterrence in this law should be guided by the earlier women progressive laws such as bigamy law, anti-dowry law, and prevention of domestic violence law. Marriage is a civil matter. As per Section 494 of the Indian Penal Code bigamy is non-cognisable and bailable offence. Violation of law through triple talaq should invite penalty and punishment accordingly and proportionately,” suggested the members.

While the women activists are rooting for a more comprehensive Bill, The All India Muslim Personal Law Board has rejected the Bill on a whole stating that it should be withheld and withdrawn.

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Printable version | Apr 9, 2020 4:05:40 AM |

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