Muslim 'instant divorce' unconstitutional, India's Supreme Court rules

In a major ruling, India's highest court has ruled against the controversial practice of "triple talaq", the instant divorce method through which many Muslim men separate their wives in the country.

In a move that is sure to affect the lives of thousands of Muslim women in the country, the SC has now put a six-month stay on the practice of Muslim men giving their wives instant divorce through triple talaq.

Last week, Prime Minister Narendra Modi praised the women who fought against the practice in his Independence Day speech.

It has thus been struck down in effect.

Justice Nariman, Justice Lalit and Justice Kurien opposed the view of Justice Nazir and Chief Justice of India J S Khehar and dubbed the practice of Triple Talaq as unconstitutional and un-Islamic. The five judges from the five faiths in the nation - Hinduism, Islam, Sikhism, Christianity, and Zoroastrianism, said that triple talaq is illegal and sinful.

Minister of State, for Information & Broadcasting Rajyavardhan Rathore also welcomed the Supreme Court's verdict.


The government had said that every personal law should be in accordance with the constitution and the rights of marriage, divorce, property and succession should be kept in the same category and they should be in line with the Constitution. "It grants equality to Muslim women and is a powerful measure for women empowerment", he tweeted. The apex court by 3:2 verdict held that the Triple Talaq is against the basic tenets of Quran. "This judgment needs to be accepted and the law must be made as soon as possible", said Shayara Bano, one of the main petitioners in the case.

Two of the judges said triple talaq was "arbitrary" and violated fundamental rights. "Triple talaq is a part of our religion and of sharia", Kamal Faruqui, a member of the executive committee of the All India Muslim Personal Law Board which advocates for Muslim law, said.

NFIW is disappointed to the fact that the Hon'ble SC has not said anything about the Muslim women's right to divorce which is very hard and a very long drawn process.

With Modi facing re-election in 2019, opposition parties have accused the mainly Hindu BJP of politicizing the triple talaq issue for electoral gain. "Reform on the ground should come from society", Owaisi said.

Needless to say, Muslim women across India are overjoyed with the verdict and hope that it will help in retaining the sanctity of their marriages.


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