Parliament passes Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2019
Parliament passed the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill 2019 or Triple Talaq Bill after it was approved by Rajya Sabha. It replaces Ordinance promulgated on February 21, 2019. It aims to declares practice of instant triple talaq void and illegal by making it cognizable penal offence.
Salient Features of Bill
- Objective: Protect rights of married Muslim women and ensure gender equality and gender justice to Muslim women by declaring practice of triple talaq as void and illegal i.e. not enforceable in law and prevent divorce by practice of ‘talaq-e-biddat’ by their husbands.
- Definitions: It defines talaq or any other similar form of talaq pronounced by Muslim man resulting in instant and irrevocable divorce. It defines Talaq-e-biddat as practice under Muslim personal laws, as pronouncement of word ‘talaq’ by Muslim husband thrice in one sitting to his wife, resulting in instant and irrevocable divorce
- Offence and Penalty: It makes this offence punishable with imprisonment up to 3 years and fine. It also makes all declaration of talaq, including in written or electronic form (email, text message etc) to be void and illegal.
- It proposes to make offence cognizable, if information relating to commission of an offence is given to police officer by married Muslim woman upon whom talaq is pronounced or by any person related to her by blood/marriage.
- It makes offence compoundable with permission of Magistrate at the instance of the married Muslim woman upon whom talaq is pronounced. It further provides for hearing married Muslim woman upon whom talaq is pronounced, before accused is released on bail by Magistrate.
- Allowance: It also provides for payment of subsistence allowance (to be determined by Magistrate) to married Muslim women against whom talaq has been declared and dependent children. The amount of allowance will be determined by Magistrate.
- Custody: It entitles Muslim woman against whom such talaq has been declared to seek custody of her minor children. In this case, Magistrate is empowered to determine manner of custody.