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Triple Talaq Bill: Handle to Muslim men to do more injustice to women, says Asaduddin Owaisi

Asaduddin Owaisi called Ravi Shankar Prasad a “failed draftsman” because, he said, how can an act that is void by law be punished in the same law.

Written by Abantika Ghosh | New Delhi | Updated: December 29, 2017 2:15 am
Triple Talaq Bill, Asaduddin Owaisi, Muslim Divorce Law, Muslim Women Divorce Law, Instant Triple Talaq, Triple Talaq punishment, Indian Express Asaduddin Owaisi arrives in Parliament Thursday. (Express Photo/Anil Sharma)

Leading the charge of Muslim MPs against the triple talaq ill, AIMIM MP and All India Muslim Personal Law Board executive committee member Asaduddin Owaisi sought a law for “20 lakh abandoned women” of all religions “including our bhabhis in Gujarat”. He questioned how a law pertaining to Muslim marriage, which is a civil contract, could resort to criminalisation. He cited census figures to make the point that 80% child marriages are among non-Muslims and 20 lakh of 23 lakh abandoned women are Hindus.

“I charge this government. You do not want to bring a law to punish those husbands who are married but their wives are not living with them… You have a vested interest. A law should be made against a man who marries and then abandons or deserts his wife,” he said. The law will only give a handle to Muslim men to do more injustice, not protect women, he argued.

He questioned a law that was framed without consultation with Muslim groups – citing the reply by Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad to a Lok Sabha question – and called Prasad a “failed draftsman” because, he said, how can an act that is void by law be punished in the same law.

Prasad made his displeasure clear by giving a brief overview of his own education and legal career. Owaisi used a story about a monkey who claimed to be “saving” the fish by picking them out of the water to underline what he thought about the bill. He moved several amendments, all of which were voted out. Interestingly, while MoS (External Affairs) M J Akbar made a powerful pitch for the law, he added about the criminalisation aspect. “That is an issue, I am sure the minister is listening.”

Speaking in Tamil, AIADMK MP Anwhar Rhajha said that instant triple talaq is a transgression and there was no problem in making it legally untenable. The problem, he said, lay in the criminalisation. “Supreme Court has said that triple talaq should not be pronounced at one go. You bring a legislation on these lines. We will accept it. But where is the criminal procedure on this?… The Tamil Nadu Government has opposed this legislation…. The provision of punishment with 3 years imprisonment and fine may be omitted,” Rhajha said.

Muslim women, he said, did not have to fight for their rights because those rights are provided in the holy book, “These are the aspects that are explained in Holy Qur’an which we meticulously follow. They say that they will protect our Muslim women. Madam Speaker, I want to say that Islam provided the right of property to Muslim women in the first instance. Islam provided them the right to legal heirship. Islam provided its women the right to select their life partners. Islam is the first religion to provide all these rights to its women. Right to education, Right to divorce, Right to remarriage, Right to select her husband, all these rights are provided to women by Islam.”

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  1. Sravan k
    Dec 29, 2017 at 5:02 pm
    What more can we expect from the AO. Such an , he will not let any good thing happen. He just went to lok sabha OR won elections because of religion. This is the time where our muslim sisters should rise their voice.
    1. Krish Menon
      Dec 29, 2017 at 3:16 pm
      With a mentality like that no wonder AO is supporting terrorists and hijackers and rapists etc. A man who looks at the wrong side of life, how the did he get elected to the Lok Sabha? must have been only because of his religion.
      1. Devendera Indra
        Dec 29, 2017 at 9:28 am
        When whole women community appreciating and applauding the bill why Owaisi is worrying, it is for the husbands who want to simply change their wives like "Dresses", enough is enough all the years, some action is going to take on cheating husbands, and some protection cover arranged to our sisters, why fist of small group of gents should raise their dirty voice. How long they play with innocent and weaker section our sisters. Nothing is wrong, such opportunistic guys should be punished, so that other girls should not suffer.
        1. S K
          Dec 29, 2017 at 7:41 am
          OWISI is devoid of logic. When an 'act' is made illegal or void by the law, the punishment for committing the 'act' should also be in the same law. Otherwise that law is incomplete and makes no sense. He is just trying to twist himself in knots, hoping people will not be able to follow his lack of logic.
          1. Vinod Soni
            Dec 29, 2017 at 6:54 am
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