National

Talaq Talaq Talaq Valid No More As Union Cabinet Passes Ordinance Criminalising Triple Talaq

ANANYA BHATNAGAR | 0
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| September 19 , 2018 , 12:41 IST

In a landmark decision, the Central Government on Wednesday approved an ordinance making triple talaq a punishable offense after the government failed to pass it through both the houses of the Parliament.

The bill had faced a stiff resistance in the Rajya Sabha where several Opposition lawmakers argued that it must be sent to a Select Committee for close scrutiny.

Even though the ordinance has been cleared for now, it must be placed before the Parliament and the bill would still need to be passed because in a January 2017 verdict, the Supreme Court had held that "re-promulgation of ordinances is a fraud on the constitution" and hence not allowed. It cannot become a "parallel source of legislation."

Earlier in August this year, the Union Cabinet had approved 3 amendments on the triple talaq bill, namely, that only a complaint can be filed by the victim (wife) or blood relations, that the husband and wife have an opportunity to reconcile and that the magistrate will have powers to grant bail. In addition, the woman victim can approach the magistrate to seek custody of her minor children and allowances for herself and her minor children.

Under the concept of triple talaq, a Muslim man can divorce his wife instantly by saying the word 'talaq' meaning divorce, thrice.

The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2017, was introduced after the Supreme Court in a landmark 3-2 verdict set aside the centuries-old practice of talaq-e-biddat or instant triple talaq. While the Bill was cleared in the Lok Sabha where the BJP itself has a clear majority, it has been pending in the Rajya Sabha where the government lacks numbers.