New Delhi, June 20: A fresh bill to ban the practice of instant triple talaq will be tabled in Lok Sabha tomorrow. The Union Cabinet last week approved the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2019. The new bill, which proposes to make the practice of instant triple talaq (talaq-e-biddat) a penal offence, will replace an ordinance issued in February by the previous BJP-led NDA government.
The previous bill had lapsed with the dissolution of the 16th Lok Sabha last month. The previous bill was passed by Lok Sabha but failed to get clearance from Rajya Sabha. The government had promulgated the ordinance on triple talaq twice — in September 2018 and in February 2019 — as the contentious bill remained pending in the Rajya Sabha. The new bill is a copy of the ordinance in force.
Under the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2019, divorcing through instant triple talaq is illegal, void and will attract a jail term of three years for the husband. After facing widespread opposition for declaring triple talaq a non-bailable offence, the government amended the bill and added a provision for bail for the accused during trial. An accused can approach a magistrate even before trial to seek bail. Triple Talaq Banned by 20 Islamic Countries, Why Can't 'Secular' India do it, Asks Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad.
In a non-bailable offence, bail cannot be granted by police at the police station itself. A provision was added to allow the magistrate to grant bail “after hearing the wife”, the government had said. Since the Narendra Modi government returned to power in the recently held elections, it has decided to give a fresh push to these proposed laws in the newly-constituted Lok Sabha.
The government plans to convert 10 ordinances, including the one to ban the practice of instant triple talaq, into law in the first session of the 17th Lok Sabha.