The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2019 was passed by Lok Sabha on 25th July 2019. The bill talks about criminalizing the instant triple talaq among Muslims. Further, it attracts imprisonment leading to three years in jail. Anyone guilty under such Act would face these consequences. The bill was finally cleared after a long debate in Lok Sabha. It has fetched 303 votes in its favor.
This was the first time that the bill was tabled by the Central Government in the 17th Lok sabha after it came back to power. As per the reports, the Union Law Minister said that the law is not about the religion or garnering the votes but for the women empowerment.
The debate had witnessed a walkout by BJP ally Nitish Kumar’s JDU short for Janata Dal United. JDU maintained that such kind of bills creates a lack of trust in society. Following JDU, two other parties in opposition – Congress and Trinamool congress also walked out after the voice vote.
The bill now faces the Rajya Sabha test. As per the statement given by AIMIM Asaduddin Owaisi, the following are the key points from his statement:
- The bill was an anti-Islamic bill.
- Introduction of law would not eradicate a social evil on women.
- The favoring party has done more harm to Muslim women than good.
- The center has not introduced a law against mob lynching,
- It has bought an ordinance for jalli kattu.
- When a Muslim woman was raped in Muzzaffarnagar there was no conviction held against the accused.
- If the Centre has respect for women they should send all BJP MP Women to Sabarimala in a special aircraft.
- A woman should have the right to leave the marriage.
- Will the husband be able to provide maintenance from jail?
- Why should the women remain married to the husband who is in imprisonment?
- The bill gives three years imprisonment to husband, it is against the criminal jurisprudence.
- The center should put a condition that if a husband gives instant triple talaq, then the amount of meher will go to the women.
- Marriage is a contract. It is not a “Janam Janam Kaa Saath”. This life is enough.
- Muslims are not homogeneous in India.
The opposition called the bill as discriminatory as it sought justice against the Muslim women only while all the women falling under any religion should be covered under the purview of being abandoned by their husbands.
Meanwhile, the bill seeks to replace the ordinance passed by the previous government in Feb 2019. Mr. Prasad stated that More than twenty Muslim countries in the world including Malaysia and Pakistan have banned the triple talaq then why it cannot be banned in a secular country like India?
Although the bill makes triple talaq a non-bailable offense, an accused can approach a magistrate to seek bail before the commencement of trial. And a provision is added to allow the Magistrate to grant bail to the husband after hearing to the wife.