The government in India has made history recently by criminalizing the “instant divorce” for Muslim people. The upper house in the country passed a bill that bans the practice that allowed men to separate from their wives just by saying “talaq”, or “divorce” three times. In fact, husbands who use it now can be fined or even be jailed up to three years.
Many feminist groups welcomed the move by the government, but one large Islamic group said that they would launch a legal challenge.
The ban was celebrated by some Muslim women’s groups at events across the country which follows Pakistan, Egypt, Bangladesh, and the UAE in regulating the “triple talaq”.
Zakia Soman, the social activist that launched a campaign against the practice almost a decade ago said that the legislation will serve as a deterrent against the unjust treatment of women, some of whom were even divorced using WhatsApp messages or by phone.
Other Muslim groups, however, said that the law was bad, and even the opposition Congress Party was against it.
Zafaryab Jilani of the All India Muslim Personal Law Board said that they will challenge the new legislation in court, and he said that the action was part of a wider campaign by Modi’s Hindu nationalist party to undermine religious freedom.
According to Jilani, a petition against the law already has 50 million signatures across India.