New Delhi: The Congress today accused the BJP of “befooling” Muslim women with the triple talaq bill that seeks to make the practice a criminal offence, alleging that it has no provision for their welfare in case their husbands are jailed.
Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad said 18 opposition parties including the Congress wanted to send the bill to a Select Committee for its proper scrutiny before it becomes a law, but the government did not allow it.
He alleged that the BJP does not believe in democracy and that is why it did not allow the motion moved by the opposition to send the bill to a select committee.
Azad said the BJP is projecting itself as a “messiah” for Muslim women and claiming to be champions of their welfare and rights, but has not made any provision for their welfare.
“This government is trying to mislead Muslim women and the general public,” he alleged at a press conference.
“What are they giving to Muslim women. They are merely projecting themselves as their messiah, but they are in fact only trying to befool the Muslim women,” he said.
Congress leader M Veerappa Moily opposed criminalising triple talaq, alleging that he BJP had adopted a “sadistic approach” and was “taking revenge” against a community.
Training his guns on the Centre, Azad said, “here is a government which wants to bulldoze bills by virtue of their strength…. The BJP does not believe in democracy, in legislatures and in Parliament. The BJP government has again proved this.”
Azad said it is Parliament which decides on the floor if a bill will go to a select committee or not.
He said in the Lok Sabha the Congress wanted the bill to be a sent to a standing committee, but the government opposed it.
“In Parliamentary democracy, it is the heads which are counted, even in forming governments,” he said, adding that “all bills are decided on the basis of majority”.
He said in the past too, the moment a bill is introduced the chair takes a sense of the House and bills are normally sent in the Rajya Sabha to select committees.
Azad claimed the bill is “more political” and there is “so much of dichotomy and contradiction” that injustice with Muslim women will continue in the absence of any provision for their welfare.
“When the husband of the Muslim woman goes to jail as per the law, who will run the family. We wanted the government to have provisions for the welfare of women.
“There is so much of contradiction and this is injustice with women as no one will be able to feed the family in case the husband goes to jail. We wanted this law to be improved as it does not do full justice. It, however, does serve the political purpose of the BJP,” he said.
Azad said the Congress intention is clear that it wants injustice with Muslim women to end. The party, he said, is seeking amendments in the proposed legislation by removing the criminality clause and make provision for looking after Muslim women in case their husband is sent to jail.
Earlier, Moily said the Congress is against the bill as it criminalises Triple Talaq.
“A civil contract marriage cannot be criminalised…. The BJP has a sadistic approach that they are taking revenge against a community,” he said adding that other communities will oppose it.