Individual’s rights above triple talaq, says Allahabad HC
Islamic laws on divorce are misinterpreted to give unbridled authority to men but inflict “tyranny” and suffering on women, the Allahabad high court observed on Thursday, reigniting the debate on one of India’s most contentious religious issues.
But court refused to comment on the legality of the practice of triple talaq — under which a man can divorce a woman by uttering the word “talaq” thrice — and said any community’s personal laws cannot override an individual’s constitutional rights. Justice Suneet Kumar said a view that Muslim men enjoyed “arbitrary and unilateral power” to inflict instant divorce didn’t match with Islamic law. “Should Muslim wives suffer this tyranny for all time? Should their personal law remain so cruel towards these unfortunate wives? Can the personal law be amended suitably to alleviate their sufferings?” Kumar asked.
Islamic personal laws that govern marriage, divorce and inheritance are among India’s most controversial codes and face a barrage of legal challenge in the SC by Muslim women. The government has told the top court that triple talaq was against gender justice, equality and the Constitution, and Prime Minister Narendra Modi has called the practice a grave injustice to women.
A 30-year-old aspiring actress was cheated of Rs24,400 by a man, who promised her a lead role opposite Salman Khan in a forthcoming film.
According to the police, the woman was called by one Sahil Parishradha, who claimed to be from Salman Khan Production House, and a relative of Shera (Khan’s bodyguard), offering her a lead role.
An officer from the Gamdevi police station, on condition of anonymity because he is not authorised to speak to the media, said, “The woman got the first call in September wherein the accused claimed he holds a high post in Salman Khan’s production house and that he got her number from a mutual friend.”
Parishradha then began contacted the woman on a regular basis and asked her to deposit Rs24,400 in his account as “initial contract fees”.