Triple ta­laq row may not bring Mus­lim votes to BJP

Hindustan Times (Amritsar) - - Nation -

VA DO DA RA: Elec­toral is­sues usu­ally mean lit­tle to Zakia Ahmed *, an anaes­thetist, and Zainab*, an en­gi­neer. The sis­ters, who strug­gled to fi­nance their ed­u­ca­tion, are more con­cerned about ev­ery­day chal­lenges faced by work­ing women in metropoli­tan ci­ties.

Though the two are tightlipped about their choices for the up­com­ing elec­toral con­test, they seem will­ing to com­pare notes on what var­i­ous po­lit­i­cal par­ties have to of­fer them. High on their list of top­ics is the BJP’s cam­paign against triple ta­laq, the con­tro­ver­sial Is­lamic prac­tice of in­stant di­vorce. Both unan­i­mously say the party did well in ap­pro­pri­at­ing the is­sue. “It is a very good step,” Zainab says.

The sis­ters, how­ever, are far from swayed by the cam­paign. Zakia, who was able to pay for her med­i­cal col­lege fee through a pri­vate Jed­dha bank’s phi­lan- thropy pro­gramme, says they would be more im­pressed if the BJP were to of­fer fi­nan­cial aid to the com­mu­nity – so women like her could pur­sue their dreams.

While many ad­mit that triple ta­laq could pave the way for the com­mu­nity to bring in sim­i­lar re­forms, there is lit­tle ev­i­dence to show the un­ease and dis­trust to­wards the saf­fron party (which emerged as a con­se­quence of the 2002 riots) have dis­si­pated. HTC

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