By Cartoonist Avinash
OBSERVING THAT the judicial conscience is “disturbed”, the Allahabad High Court has held that triple talaq is “cruel” and asked whether the Muslim Personal law could be amended to alleviate the sufferings of Muslim women. The court has held that this form of “instant divorce” is “most demeaning”, which “impedes and drags India from becoming a nation”. “The question which disturbs the court is — should Muslim wives suffer this tyranny for all times? Should their personal law remain so cruel towards these unfortunate wives? Whether the personal law can be amended suitably to alleviate their sufferings? The judicial conscience is disturbed at this monstrosity,” a single judge bench of Justice Suneet Kumar said on November 5.
The court made the observations while dismissing a petition of one Hina (23) and her husband, who was 30 years her senior, and had married her “after effecting triple talaq to his wife”. “Muslim law, as applied in India, has taken a course contrary to the spirit of what the Prophet or the Holy Quran laid down and the same misconception vitiates the law dealing with the wife’s right to divorce,” said Kumar. He added: “The purpose of law in a modern, secular state… is to bring about social change. The Muslim community comprises a large percentage of Indian population, therefore, a large section of citizens, in particular women, cannot be left to be governed by archaic customs and social practice under the garb of personal law purportedly having divine sanction.”