By Sumit Kr:
The Union Government has officially opposed the ‘triple talaq’ in the apex court after the recommendation of Law Commission of India. Unfortunately, the All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) has come to the rescue of these regressive personal laws by justifying it and protesting any amendments to it. They have cited some incoherent and absurd reasons to justify these practices. The most worrisome fact is that no political party has come to a crystal clear stand on this contentious issue, apparently to shield their share of Muslim votes, given the fact that elections are afoot in many provinces.
AIMPLB stated that the quashing of the aforementioned practices is anti-constitutional. But their statement looks like a paradox to me. In fact, these practices are more anti-constitutional than anything else. The fact is that our constitution stands on the fulcrum of Article 14 and Article 15 which secures equality before law and prevents any kind of discrimination emanating from gender.
There was a recent incident in Assam where a woman was divorced through ‘triple talaq’ only because of the reason that she had voted for BJP in the assembly elections. At a time when we are trying to sensitise people about the rights of women, it sounds so illogical to deprive a woman of her legal right to vote for a political party. Polygamy is another such curse which objectifies women and makes them subordinate to the male fraternity. AIMPLB asserted in the Supreme Court that polygamy deters illicit sex and thus helps in maintaining the pious climate of the relationship. By that logic, polyandry should also be made allowed because they also hold the same inalienable right to sex (Article 21) as the men have. Many Islamic states including Pakistan has no such practice. It proves the fact that these practices are not an essential practice of Islam and so, they don’t impinge with Article 25 of the Indian Constitution that guarantees them the freedom of conscience of religion.
India is standing on a very crucial stage of her development. No economic development can sustain without simultaneous social and political development. Social development depends on emancipation of the vulnerable, downtrodden, poor and the women. Some people will agree while some will disagree but the point is that society should be able to adapt itself to the contemporary changes to move ahead.