The highest court in India states triple talaq as unconstitutional. The women rights groups in India consider it a major victory. It was a split verdict with 3 of the judges ruling against it and 2 in its favor. Indian Muslim men were still using the triple talaq by saying the word three times to divorce their wives.
The Need to Declare Triple Talaq Unconstitutional
Only a few countries allow a Muslim man to divorce his wife using triple talaq. The new verdict will shun the practice of Muslim men divorcing their wives in India. The SC came up with this decision after five women in India filed a petition against this practice. The five Muslim women filing the petition were divorced similarly.
The need for declaring this practice unconstitutional came forth because of the misuse of the triple talaq. Muslim men would use the modern means of communication to absolve themselves of the responsibilities. They would send a divorce message via Skype, WhatsApp, or SMS. This practice resulted in more of the women going to court to get justice.
Islam and Sharia on Divorce
Islam forbids wife and husband to end their relationship in haste. It asks both the parties to take time and try to reconcile. Overcome the differences which exist between them by providing room to each other. Islamic scholars say that if a divorce is mandatory, it must be spread over a period of 3 months. Pakistan and Bangladesh do not allow triple talaq anymore.
Verdict by the Judges
Three out of the five judges termed this practice as arbitrary, un-Islamic, and unconstitutional. One of the five judges Justice Kurien Joseph stated that Islam did not protect this practice and it was not an essential part of the religion. One judge, Justice JS Khehar said that the constitutional part of the Indian law could not touch the personal law. The judges opposing this practice have asked the Indian parliament to pass a law on this issue in Parliament, but it is not mandatory for the parliament to do so.
Indian Muslim Women Breathe a Sigh of Relief
This landmark judgment by the Indian Supreme Court gives the Muslim Indian women some breathing space. The problem of giving triple talaq was prevalent among the Muslim families. The women rights groups say that this practice was more common to the low-income families. The practice resulted in more of the women going back to their parents’ homes.
The Board for All India Muslim Person Law did not support the verdict. It had maintained earlier that the court did not have the jurisdiction to decide on this as a personal matter. However, the board is yet to state this issue. Minority groups did not particularly like this judgment. Many of the activists of minority rights groups say that this decision holds long term repercussions for other religious minorities in India.