India’s Supreme Court bans ‘triple talaq’ practice

  • The judges term instant divorce 'un-constitutional' and 'un-Islamic'
World

NEW DELHI –  The Indian Supreme Court on Tuesday imposed a ban on a practice that allows Muslim men to divorce their wives immediately and termed triple talaq “unconstitutional”.

A five-member bench announced the verdict with 3-2 majority in the cases filed by five victim Muslim women and two rights groups against the triple talaq custom, which now has been declared “un-Islamic” by the court. The parties have concluded their arguments in May.

The five judges belong to major faiths, including Hinduism, Christianity, Islam, Sikhism and Zoroastrianism.

In India, several cases emerged in which men have parted ways with their wives by saying a word talaq three times using letter, telephone and, now a days WhatsApp and Skype.

Ruling on the cases, the majority of the bench is of view that triple talaq “is not integral to religious practice and violates constitutional morality”.

Highlighting ban on such practice in several Islamic countries like Pakistan,  judges questioned why it should not be ended in India.

According to NDTV.com, the judges made the following points in their landmark judgement;

  1. It is “manifestly arbitrary” to allow a man to “break down (a) marriage whimsically and capriciously”.
  2. “What is sinful under religion cannot be valid under law”
  3. The court said the practice is  “unconstitutional”, “arbitrary” and “not part of Islam”.

It is notable that the Indian government, led by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), has raised voice to abolish the practice. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has also highlighted the issue many times.