Triple talaq: India top court reviews Islamic instant divorce – BBC News

For those enamoured by the word pluralism, one used often to describe India, this is what it can mean.

Pluralism, like multiculturalism and interculturalism, can either be ‘deep,’ with separate institutions and family law, or ‘shallow,’ where religious and other community rights are balanced against other rights such as gender.

Canadian commentators who jump upon negative foreign commentary on multiculturalism need to understand clearly that multiculturalism in Canada is based upon civic integration, with individual religious rights subject to the other fundamental freedoms and equality.

Will be interesting to see how the Indian Supreme Court rules:

India’s Supreme Court has formally opened hearings into a number of petitions challenging the controversial practice of instant divorce in Islam.

The court said it would examine whether the practice known as “triple talaq” was fundamental to the religion.

India is one of a handful of countries in the world where a Muslim man can divorce his wife in minutes by saying the word talaq (divorce) three times.

But activists say the practice is “discriminatory”.

Many Muslim groups have opposed the court’s intervention in their religious matters, although the move has the backing of the current Indian government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The sensitive issue is being heard by a multi-faith bench made up of five judges – a Hindu, a Sikh, a Christian, a Zoroastrian and one Muslim.

The bench has combined several petitions from Muslim women and rights groups into one to examine the issue.

The opposing sides have been given three days each to argue their cases, with the court saying the hearing will end by 19 May.

A judgement is expected to be delivered in the coming weeks.


The Indian government has told the court that triple talaq is unconstitutional, against gender justice and the dignity of women.

Muslim organisations that support the practice say it’s an issue of faith and personal law, and the courts have no role in reviewing it.

For years now, Muslim women in India have been demanding a ban on a practice they view as reprehensible.

Campaigners say over the years, thousands of women, especially those from poor families, have been discarded by their husbands, many have been rendered destitute with nowhere to go and many have been forced to return to their parental homes or fend for themselves.

Muslims are India’s largest minority community with a population of 155 million and their marriages and divorces are governed by the Muslim personal law, ostensibly based on Sharia, or Islamic law.

The law came into force in 1937 and lays out that, in matters of personal dispute, the state shall not interfere.

Source: Triple talaq: India top court reviews Islamic instant divorce – BBC News

Advertisements

About Andrew
Andrew blogs and tweets public policy issues, particularly the relationship between the political and bureaucratic levels, citizenship and multiculturalism. His latest book, Policy Arrogance or Innocent Bias, recounts his experience as a senior public servant in this area.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: