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Equality before law denied to Muslim women in matter of triple talaq

Kochi: The Kerala High Court today said equality before law has been denied to Muslim women in India in the matter of triple talaq.

Disposing of three cases involving divorced Muslim women including change of name in spouse in passport for a person who had ended his marriage by triple talaq, the high court urged the need for codified law with regard to divorce.

In its 60-page judgement, the court said entire exercise is to alert the state that justice has become elusive to Muslim women and remedy lies in codification of law of divorce.

Delivering the judgement, Justice A Muhamed Mustaque observed that it is for the lawmakers to formulate the law relating to divorce through the process of legislation.

The court asked the registry to forward the copy of judgement to the Law Ministry and Law Commission of India.

The state is committed to respect the promise of dignity before law and it cannot shirk its responsibility by remaining mute spectator of malady suffered by Muslim women in the name of religion, the court said.

The court also urged the need for a state legislation to regulate triple talaq.

The court added that the Quran nowhere approves triple talaq in one utterance and on the other hand promotes conciliation as best method to resolve marital discord.

Even Islamic countries like Egypt, Iraq and UAE have totally derecognised the concept of triple talaq. One has to wonder how equality before law has been denied to Muslim women in India, the court said.

State, as a measure, must strive to achieve meaningful action to sustain equilibrium towards national oneness in character of society while giving freedom to remain as one group, the court said.

The need for common civil code, though it is debated at different levels, still remains as mirage for want of agreement among different groups, it said.

It is possible to have a common code at least for marriage laws in India, the court said.

The judgement concluded quoting verses from the Quran.

“It is for the state to consider formulation of codified law to govern the matter. Therefore, I conclude drawing attention of those who resist any form of reform of the divorce law of Muslim community in India to the following verses of Holy Quran (Chapter 47:2);

“And those who believe and do good works and believe in that which is revealed unto Muhammed- and it is the truth from their Lord-He riddeth them of their ill deeds and improveth their state”;

“Thus we display the revelations for people who have sense” (Chapter 30:28).

PTI