New Delhi: Quoted by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his speech in Parliament and praised by BJP president Amit Shah recently over his stand against the instant triple talaq, former Union minister, Arif Mohammad Khan, who had quit the Congress over its leadership stand against the Shah Bano case verdict, could be accomodated to the Rajya Sabha by the BJP. Speculation is rife in the BJP that Mr Khan, who had unsuccessfully contested the 2004 Lok Sabha polls on a BJP ticket and later quit it, could be made a member of the Upper House of Parliament. The BJP is also abuzz that Mr Khan could be accomodated in the Rajya Sabha as a nominated member as well. Even the RSS, it was learnt, is in favour of Mr Khan's "reformist efforts" for his community being appreciated by the Modi government.
In a major political victory for the Modi government, the contentious bill against instant triple talaq was approved in the recently concluded budget session of Parliament. The government had been making efforts since its first tenure when the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill was moved in 2017 but faced hurdles in the Rajya Sabha where the BJP-led NDA is in minority.
The opposition parties had alleged that the ruling BJP was trying to use it as a political tool against a particular community, which the BJP had vehemently rejected stating that it was for gender justice and women empowerment. Infact, BJP ally JD(U) had also joined the oppositions' camp on this issue. The bill was a follow up of the Supreme Court verdict which had termed the practise as "invalid and unconstitutional."
Coming out in support of the government's move against the instant triple talaq, Mr Khan had said it was an "evil practice" and had favoured for criminalising the practice, an issue over which most opposition parties had opposed the Modi government's move.
Quoting Mr Khan, the Prime Minister in the recently concluded budget session of Parliament had asked the Congress to support the bill to make up for two "missed opportunities" on the issue of women empowerment in the past- Uniform Civil Code and the Shah Bano judgement. Recently, BJP president and Union home minister Amit Shah had praised Mr Khan, calling him a reformist and had prasied him for his views against instant triple talaq.