Administration Law & Justice

Cabinet nod to reissue ordinance on Triple Talaq

The Union Cabinet on Tuesday gave its nod to re-publish the contentious Triple Talaq ordinance that makes the practice of instant triple talaq by Muslim men a penal offense.

The Cabinet has given its nod to the triple talaq ordinance, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley told reporters in the Cabinet briefing, stating that it is among those ordinances and bills which had been passed by the Lok Sabha but could not be taken up in the Rajya Sabha due to continuous protests by opposition parties.

Once penned by President Ram Nath Kovind, the triple talaq ordinance will come into force for the third time in less than one year. A bill on the ordinance making the practice of ‘talaq-e-biddat’ (instance divorce) void and an offense is pending in Rajya Sabha. The bill will lapse on June 3 with the dissolution of the current Lok Sabha.

Opposition parties and some community leaders have claimed that jail term for a man for separating his wife is legally untenable. The government has asserted that it provides justice and equality to Muslim women.

To a question about the need for a government to clear various ordinances, including the one on triple talaq, weeks ahead of the general election, Jaitley said discussions on these ordinances and bills had been “physically prevented” in Parliament.

“It (discussion) has not been prevented because numbers were against it… Indian democracy cannot be helpless. Extraordinary situations do call for such steps,” he stated, adding that some ordinances, including one against inter-state ponzi scheme, are in larger national interest. The government has promulgated the ordinance on triple talaq twice.