Dealing with Triple Talaq is an urgent matter for the Indian Parliament, as stated in objects and reasons for the Bill. The Bill categorically states that despite the ruling of the Supreme Court, many muslim men have continued to pronounce triple talaq. To tackle the same, Section 4 of the Bill aims to provide for imprisonment up to 3 years to muslim men giving triple talaq. Section 7 makes giving triple talaq a cognizable and non bailable offence i.e. a long battle for bail if arrested, and also giving police the power to barge in and arrest.It is true that some muslim men have given triple talaq to their wives, even after judgment of the Supreme Court. Instances include giving triple talaq over attending PM Modi’s rally, wife sleeping till late and also of a husband calling from Kuwait to divorce his wife in India.

Could these remote instances not have been tackled by already present provisions in the Indian law? The answer is emphatically yes. S. 125 of the CrPC takes adequate care of a wife being neglected by the husband. And as the Supreme Court has held triple talaq to be illegal, any triple talaq as it is was going to have no force in law. Even otherwise, the wife could have claimed remedies under the domestic violence laws and also the Specific Relief Act. By criminalizing triple talaq, the Parliament is paving way of having yet another crime, which could well become another S. 498 A like tool for extortion. If not anything, the Government should have incorporated essence of S. 198 of CrPC, which is a special provision in relation to crime with respect to marriage. The tardy drafting effort is also visible from terms like “subsistence”, which otherwise should have been called maintenance.

As per Art. 141, all courts are bound to follow the judgments of the Supreme Court. There was no suggestion from Supreme Court to even have a law on the issue. This pure suo motu exercise by the Government gives no new remedy to any muslim woman. It has only created a political ground for all parties to encash.

 

 

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