Even as the Allahabad High Court said on Thursday that Triple Talaq is unconstitutional and violates women’s rights, the All India Muslim Personal Law Board refused to accept the verdict and said it would appeal to the Supreme Court of India.
The Personal Law Board maintains that divine Sharia laws regarding marriage, divorce and adaptation cannot be modified or altered by any person or authority, though the High Court categorically stated, “Personal laws of any community cannot claim supremacy over the rights granted to the individuals by the constitution.”
Strangely, the Personal Law Board and the vociferous supporters of Sharia Laws and Triple Talaq are completely silent on the other provisions of Islamic Criminal Jurisprudence which stipulate amputation, whipping, beheading and stoning to death.
Several political parties in the country, including the Trinamool Congress, have supported the Personal Law Board, with keen eyes on elections.The BJP on the other hand, opposes Triple Talaq as it is likely to consolidate Hindu votes.
Observe24x7 appeals to all such supporters of Triple Talaq to explain why they favour selective application of Sharia laws. If they support Triple Talaq, why can’t they also openly support beheading, amputation of limbs and whipping as well?
Islamic law divides crimes into three different categories depending on the nature of the offense. Hudud are crimes against God whose punishment is fixed according to the Quran and the Hadith. Quisas are crimes against an individual or family, whose punishment is equal retaliation according to Quran and the Hadith. Tazir are crimes whose punishment is not specified in the Quran and the Hadiths and is left to the discretion of the ruler or a judge.
The Hudud punishment for stealing is the amputation of the hand and whipping is the punishment for premarital sex and for accusation of rape without providing four male witnesses to the rape. This form of punishment is sometimes combined with stoning. The punishment for crimes such as abandonment of Islam by a Muslim and use of drugs and several other intoxicants is beheading.
Quisas is the Islamic principle of ‘an eye for an eye’ for crimes such as murder and assault. Here, the victim has the right to pardon the perpetrator.
Tazir includes any crime that does not fit into Hudud or Qisas and which therefore has no specific punishment. Such crimes are decided by the state, the ruler or a judge.
The website of the All India Muslim Personal Law Board says that it was established in 1973 “when the then Government of India was trying to subvert Shariah law” applicable to Indian Muslims through parallel legislation.
The Supreme Court of India will soon take up several petitions by Muslim women’s organizations, which allege that in many cases Muslim men have divorced women by uttering Talaq thrice even over telephone, Facebook and Twitter.
The procedure of Triple Talaq is confined to the Sunnis alone. But as many as 22 Muslim countries – including Pakistan and Bangladesh have stopped the practice.