What Does the Law against Triple Talaq Really Mean for Muslims?

Social Commentary

What Does the Law against Triple Talaq Really Mean for Muslims?

Illustration: Robin Chakraborty

 T

he days of Muslim men being able to divorce their wives instantaneously upon uttering the words “talaq, talaq, talaq” seem to be numbered, with the government passing a Bill in the Lok Sabha, making the practice a punishable offense. More than a full year after the Supreme Court termed the custom of triple talaq “unconstitutional”, the issue has divided public opinion once again, with opposing camps voicing conflicting opinions on the ordinance. The debate over the issue grew so heated that the Opposition staged a walkout.

On the surface, it’s an unambiguous step toward equality, ensuring that women are not deserted and left vulnerable after their husbands suddenly terminate their matrimonial alliance. This is a view echoed by Zakia Soman, a Mumbai-based women’s rights activist who also co-founded the NGO Bharatiya Muslim Mahila Andolan (BMMA). “The Muslim woman is happy today because she wants legal protection. Despite the Supreme Court order, instant triple talaq has been taking place, so we needed this to be criminalised,” she was quoted as saying in an interview with Al Jazeera.

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