Editor’s Note: This post has been written with the intention to enable young lawyers to prosecute offenders under the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Act, 2019.
Find out how to lodge adequate complaints against men giving talaq by reciting talaq, talaq, talaq.
Figure out the remedies available to women who are divorced in such manner.
And find out what happens to the marriage after triple talaq.
I, seriously, recommend that you read the Act. It is a very short Act with only eight sections. It will give you a sense of confidence when dealing with such matters in real life.
Table of Contents
“Talaq” is a word of Arabic origin and it means “divorce”; denoting dissolution of marriage when a Muslim man can severe all marital ties with his wife.
Under the Muslim law, Triple Talaq meant liberty from the relationship of marriage, eventually or immediately, where the man, by simply uttering the word ‘talaq’ three times, end his marriage. This instant divorce is called Triple Talaq, also known as ‘talaq-e-bidat’.
The Muslim Personal Law (Shariat) Application Act of 1937 had legalized and allowed the practice of Triple Talaq which gave a Muslim husband special privileges over his wife.
The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Act, 2019, was passed by the Indian Parliament as a law on July 30, 2019, to make instant Triple Talaq a criminal offence.
It was introduced in the Lok Sabha by the Minister of Law and Justice Ravi Shankar Prasad on June 21, 2019.
The Rajya Sabha, ultimately, passed the Bill with 99 votes in its favour and 84 against it.
The Triple Talaq law has made instant triple talaq a criminal offence. Section 4 of the Act provides for a jail term which may extend up to three years for any Muslim man who commits the crime.
Section 7 of the Act makes Triple Talaq a compoundable, cognizable and non-bailable offence.
As the Bill was pending for consideration in the Rajya Sabha and the practice of Triple Talaq divorce system was continuing, there was an urgent need to take immediate action to prevent such a practice by making strict provisions in the law. Therefore, meanwhile the Bill awaited assent of the Rajya Sabha, the Bill was replaced by an Ordinance promulgated on February 21, 2019.
According to Section 3 of the act “ Any pronouncement of talaq by a Muslim husband upon his wife, by words, either spoken or written or in electronic form or in any other manner whatsoever, shall be void and illegal.”
Section 4 of the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Act, 2019 defines the punishment for pronouncing talaq “Any Muslim husband who pronounces talaq referred to in section 3 upon his wife shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years, and shall also be liable to fine.”
Section 4 of the act states that “whoever pronounces Triple Talaq upon his wife shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years and fine”.
According to Section 7 (c) in Chapter 3, “No person accused of an offense punishable under Triple Talaq law shall be released on bail after the Magistrate, on an application filed by the accused and after hearing the married Muslim woman upon whom talaq was pronounced, is convinced that there are reasonable grounds for granting bail to the accused”.
An FIR is lodged against the husband pronouncing triple talaq. As per Section 7(a) this FIR may be lodged either by the aggrieved wife or a relative of the aggrieved.
If a Muslim husband has given triple talaq to his wife, the wife can file a complaint against her husband under the new Act.
According to Section 3 of the Act stipulates:
“any pronouncement of talaq by a person upon his wife, by words, either spoken or written or in electronic form or in any other manner whatsoever, shall be void and illegal”.
Therefore, marriage stays in existence and the divorce by means of triple talaq has no effect at all.
Talaq-e-biddat under the Sharia laws is a right given only to Muslim men. It was in practice for a long time in India. With the advent of telecom technology, many Muslim men took advantage and uttered talaq three times in one go over the phone to divorce their wives, since the pronouncement had to be in one sitting.
As per Section 3 of the Act, any form of triple talaq pronouncing triple talaq via electronic means is similarly punishable as pronouncing triple talaq in person. Hence, no form of triple talaq will render the marriage void.
Edited by Siddhant Pandey