The practice of instant triple talaq was “archaic, barbaric” and an insult to women, and the Supreme Court had done a “yeoman service” in its landmark judgment, former Lt Governor of Delhi Najeeb Jung said today.
He was addressing a gathering after launching a new book by senior Congress leader Salman Khurshid — ‘Triple Talaq: Examining Faith’ — which seeks to make the intricacies of the judgement “more accessible to the common man”.
“Women have the right to be treated as an individual, the right to work outside her home if she wishes too… Triple talaq is a wretched concept that is archaic, barbaric and insulting to women. And, the Supreme Court has done a yeoman service with their judgement,” Jung said.
“Parliament can debate (the bill) till the cow comes home,” he said.
Khurshid, who described the genre of his book as a “non-fiction that explains truth”, told reporters, “The apex court has given its judgement, yet there is so much fuss about it.”
“I also wrote the book to make the concept of triple talaq and the nuances of the landmark judgement more comprehensible to people,” the former Union law minister said.
In a path-breaking verdict, the Supreme Court on August 22 last year banned the 1,400-year-old practice of instant triple talaq among Muslims and set it aside on several grounds including that it was against the basic tenets of the Holy Quran and violated the Islamic law Shariat.
Members of the Constitution bench had referred to the verses of the Holy Quran in pronouncing the judgement.
Also, a bill that criminalises instant triple talaq among Muslims has been passed by the Lok Sabha and awaits nod by the Rajya Sabha.
Incidentally, Khurshid had intervened to offer the court an amicus brief in the triple talaq case.
Asked what all research he did for his book, the senior Congress leader said, “I was already involved in it, so I was aware of the content.
Besides, to make the legalese content more accessible to a lay man, I have tried to contexualise it.”
The book, published by the Oxford Union Press, has been divided into seven chapters, such as, ‘He Said, She Said, They Said: Arguments by the Court; Submission before the court; The judgement; Triple Talaq: Judgement Excerpts.
In his speech, Khurshid extolled the virtues of Islam and emphasised on the harmony and plurality that bind a diverse country like India.
“Let us first delve into what Islam is… And, as a plural society we must do whatever we can. The challenge is for people of various faiths to live with each other, to accommodate the other.
Asked if his book was an act of advocacy, he quipped, “If telling the truth is an act of advocacy, so it is.”
Former finance minister P Chidambaram, ex-chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir Farooq Abdullah, former Chief Justice of India Aziz Mushabber Ahmadi, and senior Congress leader Mani Shankar Aiyar were also present on the occassion.