The Supreme Court on Friday refused to entertain a petition challenging the ordinance making instant triple talaq a punishable offence. “We are not inclined to interfere,” a bench of Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi and Justices K M Joseph and Hemant Gupta said, turning down the plea by ‘Samastha Kerala Jamiat Ulema’, a “a religious organisation of the Sunni Muslim scholars and clerics in Kerala”.
The CJI pointed out that the ordinance was only notified on September 19 and had a life of six months. He told senior advocate Raju Ramachandran, “Winter session of Parliament is coming. Wait.”
As the counsel persisted, the CJI said, “Suppose we issue notice and the ordinance is not stayed, what is the purpose?”
Ramachandran said the very bringing of the ordinance was a fraud on the Constitution. The CJI replied, “What fraud on the Constitution?… Don’t go so high.”
The bench went on to dismiss the petition when Ramachandran sought permission to withdraw it. The court allowed the same.
The petition contended that the ordinance “is violative of Articles 14, 15 and 21 of the Constitution and accordingly, requires to be struck down”.
The petition said that the ordinance had introduced penal legislation, specific to a class of persons based on religious identity and that “it is causative of grave public mischief, which, if unchecked, may lead to polarisation and disharmony in society”.