Muslim cleric supports Naidu's assertion on Triple Talaq

| Updated: May 21, 2017 21:22 IST

Kanpur (Uttar Pradesh) [India], May 21 (ANI): With Union Minister M. Venkaiah Naidu stating that the government may have to step in and enact a law to ban Triple Talaq if the Muslim community fails to change the practice, Qazi Dr. Hina Zaheer on Sunday asserted that she stands by Naidu's opinion and called on the government to take quick steps. "I support Venkaiah Naidu's statement and stand by him on his opinion because everyday a Muslim lady either by speed post, social media, WhatsApp or through a phone call faces the turbulence of talaq. With this instant talaq the consequences and shame that women face are more than men. As women are not secured financially they are abandoned without a home and family. I solely wish that the government may steps in enact a law to ban triple talaq soon," Zaheer told ANI. Thanking the government for highlighting the matter on a large scale, Zaheer further stated that after a ban on Triple Talaq, Muslim women will be respected. "Muslim community is in a bad light because of Triple Talaq. If the country is thinking of its people especially the women, then we should be grateful that the government thinks about our future," said Zaheer. Earlier this week, the apex court reserved its order pertaining with validity of the Islamic divorce practice - triple talaq. The five judge bench of the top court, headed by Chief Justice of India (CJI), Jagdish Singh Khehar and four other judges Justices Rohinton Fali Nariman, Kurian Joseph, Uday Umesh Lalit and S. Abdul Nazeer, reserved the order after hearing in great detail from all the parties - from various petitioners and respondents and the Central government for six consecutive days during the summer vacation session. The All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) told the apex court that marriage in the Muslim community is a contract and in order to protect their interests, they can put special emphasis on certain clauses in 'nikahnama'. The board further said that a Muslim woman had every right to pronounce triple talaq in all forms, and also ask for very high 'mehr' amount in case of talaq. The board's reply came after CJI J.S. Khehar asked AIMPLB counsel Kapil Sibal if it was possible to give bride the right to not accept instant triple talaq. The board also showed the court a resolution passed on April 14, 2017 which stated triple talaq as a sin and that the community should boycott the person doing such an act. While Sibal earlier said the apex court should not decide or interfere in one's faith and belief. To this, Justice Rohinton Fali Nariman, one of the five judges constituting the bench asked, if they should not hear the matter at all. "Yes, you should not hear," replied Sibal. Earlier, Sibal asked the top court as to how a 1400-year-old practice be branded 'unconstitutional'. "Triple talaq is going on since 1400 years, how can you say it is unconstitutional?" Sibal asked the apex court. Sibal further argued that just like the Hindus' faith about Rama's birth at Ayodhya cannot be questioned, similarly Triple Talaq which is also a matter of faith for Muslims should not be questioned. The bench also questioned the AIMPLB on the position of e-divorce given on the WhatsApp in Islam. The Centre, during the earlier hearing, assured the apex court that it would come out with a law to regulate marriage and divorce among Muslims if Triple Talaq is upheld as invalid. "The government will come out with law to regulate marriage and divorce among Muslims if court holds Triple Talaq as invalid," Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi told the bench. Rohatgi also conveyed to the apex court bench that triple talaq violates Muslim women's right to equality within the community, and also within the country. Earlier in the hearing, the apex court refused to hear all the three cases of Polygamy, Nikah and Halala at once, saying it would focus on one matter at a time. The Attorney General and top law officers representing the Central government arguing in front of the five judge Constitution bench said the apex court should hear other cases also, besides triple talaq. However, the top court said that they have a limited time, so all the matters could not be covered at present. On the second day of the hearing, senior Congress leader Salman Khurshid, who is the amicus curiae in the matter, said before the Supreme Court that the controversial Islamic divorce system cannot be justified whatsoever. Citing examples, Khurshid told the court that the Triple Talaq practice cannot be validated constitutionally. "There was a discussion that whether triple talaq is valid constitutionally. Substantiating my view with reasons and examples, I asserted that it cannot be justified and cannot be given law's validation," Khurshid said during the hearing. The Centre, earlier on May 11, told the apex court that it opposed the triple talaq practice and wanted to fight for women equality and gender justice. However, AIMPLB counsel Kapil Sibal told the apex court that Triple Talaq is a matter that comes under the Muslim board and therefore, in his opinion, the top court should not interfere in it. "The Central Government makes rules but in my opinion the apex court should not interfere into it," Sibal said. While hearing several pleas filed by Muslim women challenging the practice of triple talaq, the apex court earlier observed that it would examine whether the issue is fundamental to religion or not. (ANI)

iocl