President Ram Nath Kovind Thursday gave his assent to the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2019, two days after it was passed by Rajya Sabha and a week after Lok Sabha cleared it. With this, instant talaq or talaq-e-biddat becomes a criminal offence, carrying a sentence of up to three years for Muslim men who give instant talaq (divorce) to their wives.
The Bill was passed in Rajya Sabha 99-84 after Biju Janata Dal (BJD) came out in support, while allies Janata Dal (United) and All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) staged a walked out, and Opposition parties Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), Telugu Desam Party (TDP) and Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) did a no-show.
A motion by CPM member Elamaram Kareem to refer the Bill to a Select Committee was defeated 84-100.
The Lok Sabha had cleared the triple talaq Bill 186-74 on July 25.
Hailing the passage of the Bill which makes instant talaq a criminal offence, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said it was a “victory of gender justice”.
“An archaic and medieval practice has finally been confined to the dustbin of history! Parliament abolishes Triple Talaq and corrects a historical wrong done to Muslim women. This is a victory of gender justice and will further equality in society. India rejoices today!” PM Modi tweeted, while thanking parties who supported the passage of the Bill.
“I thank all parties and MPs who have supported the passage of The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2019 in both Houses of Parliament. They have risen to the occasion and this step of theirs will forever be remembered in India’s history,” he wrote on Twitter.
“This is an occasion to salute the remarkable courage of those Muslim women who have suffered great wrongs just due to the practice of Triple Talaq. The abolition of Triple Talaq will contribute to women empowerment and give women the dignity they deserve in our society,” he added.
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