New Delhi, November 2: The Supreme Court bench presided by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi on Friday refused to entertain a Petition seeking striking of the triple talaq ordinance, which attracts a three-year jail term for the erring Muslim husband, stating that the ordinance is violative of Articles 14, 15 and 21 of the Constitution.
The ordinance, which makes the practice of Triple Talaq a criminal act was promulgated by the government in September this year and had attracted several pleas against it in various courts.
The Supreme Court today was of the view that it did not find any particular reason to intervene in the issue and thus allowed senior advocate Raju Ramachandran to withdraw the petition moved by a Muslim group named Samastha Kerala Jamiat Ulema.
The petitioners argued that the ordinance is unconstitutional and sought to strik it down, contending that it does not fulfill the mandatory requirements provided in Article 123 of the Constitution. It was also stated, “the declaration in the ordinance that the practice continues ‘unabated’ is entirely whimsical," and furthermore claimed that the prosecutions under it “are not tenable in law.”
Article 123 of the Constitution deals with the Power of President to promulgate Ordinances during recess of Parliament and enables promulgation of ordinances only in the instances where it requires immediate action.
The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Ordinance, 2018, has made the instant triple talaq illegal and void, however, the government has also included some other safeguards to prevent it's misuse such as the offence becomes cognizable only if information related to the offence is provided either by the married woman, victim of Triple Talaq or any person related to her by blood or marriage.
Secondly, the Magistrate may grant bail to the accused husband but only after hearing the woman.
The law also provides for subsistence allowance to a harassed Muslim woman and her dependent children and the custodial rights of minor children.
The Supreme Court in August last year, in the Shayara Bano case, while setting aside the practice of instant triple talaq or talaq-e-biddat, had ruled that the practice of instant triple talaq in the Muslim community is invalid and termed it as "illegal as well as unconstitutional"
On September 19 this year, President Ram Nath signed the ordinance after its approval by the Union Cabinet.