Cabinet approves ordinance making instant triple talaq a punishable offence

The move to punish instant divorces will make a triple talaq ban likelier. — Reuters pic

India's Muslim Law Board had told the court that while they considered the practice wrong, they opposed any court intervention and asked that the matter be left to the community. The bill criminalises the practice of divorcing by uttering the word "talaq" thrice in any form - spoken, in writing, or over electronic communication.

"Cabinet has today approved an ordinance on Triple Talaq". The government should bring an ordinance into this, he added.

The BJP has been accusing the Congress of stalling the passage of the landmark Bill which was passed in the Lok Sabha on December 29, 2017.

The government expects the provision of a jail term of up to three years and a fine in the law to deter Muslim men from opting for instant divorce.

The government has said the measure was necessary as the practice of talaq-e-biddat was continuing unabated despite the Supreme Court a year ago striking it down.

Indian Muslim women rest inside Jama Masjid mosque in New Delhi, India.

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In a non-bailable offence, bail can not be granted by police at the police station itself.

Describing the practice as "barbaric and inhuman", he said almost 22 countries have regulated triple talaq.

Now that the President has given his assent, the Ordinance will come into force for six months. "It is purely an issue of gender justice, gender dignity and gender equality", he said. "The government's ordinance does not care two hoots about how Muslim women, whose so called errant husbands would be facing a stiff prison term, would earn their sustenance for themselves or their children", she continued.

The Congress on Wednesday accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the BJP of using the issue of instant triple talaq as a political football for vote garnering rather than ensuring the welfare of Muslim women, and said they have become "habitual offenders". But while the police can't grant bail, a judge can - after hearing the woman.

Between January 2018 to August. the Parliament sessions were a washout because of which the Bill was not tabled in Parliament. "Even today, Modi Govt and Law Minister have indulged in mere vilification and blame game without releasing the proposed ordinance or listing out the solutions or concerns raised by Muslim women on the subsistence for themselves as also the children born out of the marriage", he alleged. Several Opposition lawmakers argued that it must be sent to a Select Committee for close scrutiny.

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