WEST BENGAL minister Siddiqullah Chowdhury, who is also Jamiat Ulema-i-Hind president, on Wednesday called the Supreme Court verdict on instant triple talaq “unconstitutional” and said the apex court and the Central government have “no right to interfere in “Muslim personal law”.
“The Supreme Court verdict is unconstitutional and we will not abide by it. Our central committee will meet in Delhi today to decide our future course of action on this,” Chowdhury told the media in Kolkata a day after the court struck down the practice of instant triple talaq.
While Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee has not commented on the issue yet, Chowdhury, Minister of State for Mass Education Extension and Library Services (Independent Charge) and Parliamentary Affairs in the Banerjee Cabinet, alleged that Supreme Court judges passed the order without knowledge of Islam and its traditions and practices.
“The judges said that there is no mention of talaq in Quran. This is not true. We find mention of talaq in one Surah of the Holy Quran. The judges should have consulted expert members of our community before passing the judgment,” he said.
Triple talaq, Chowdhury said, is “mentioned in Quran, and we will abide by it”.
But, he added, “We will educate members of our community not to misuse the law,” he said. If needed, the TMC leader added, his organisation will hold meetings and rallies in Kolkata to create mass awareness on the issue.
Chowdhury also criticised members of the Muslim community who spoke in favour of the court verdict: “People like (Bangladeshi writer) Taslima Nasreen and others have gave their views on this and spoken in favour of the verdict. Those are their personal opinion (but) they are not well educated about Islam and its rituals. A political party was also seen celebrating the verdict as if they have won something. This is not right.”
The state BJP, meanwhile, demanded immediate removal of Chowdhury from his post for terming the Supreme Court verdict as unconstitutional.
“Being a state minister, Siddiqullah Chowdhury has dishonoured his constitutional post by speaking against the Supreme Court verdict. He should be immediately sacked and should be arrested for not abiding by the law of the country,” BJP national secretary Rahul Sinha told The Indian Express.