A bill to convert the earlier ordinance, issued in September 2018, was cleared by the Lok Sabha on December 27, 2018.
New Delhi: Having missed the opportunity of getting the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2018, passed in the Rajya Sabha after it was passed by the Lok Sabha the Centre has re-promulgated the ordinance banning the practice of instant triple talaq.
The NDA regime has projected this legislation as a landmark one, which is aimed at empowering millions of Muslim women who have been victims of instant triple talaq. The next sitting of Parliament (which would be the final one of the 16th Lok Sabha) is tentatively scheduled to take place between January 31 and February 13, 2019, during which the government is likely to present its interim Budget. The government would try to get the bill passed in Rajya Sabha during this Budget Session. Under the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Ordinance, 2019, which was issued on January 12, divorcing through instant triple talaq will be illegal and void and would attract a jail term of three years for the husband.
A bill to convert the earlier ordinance, issued in September 2018, was cleared by the Lok Sabha on December 27, 2018. However, it was pending in the Rajya Sabha.
Since the bill could not get parliamentary approval, the fresh ordinance was issued.
Last week, the Union Cabinet had approved reissuance of the ordinance. Seeking to allay the fears that the proposed law could be misused, the government has included certain safeguards in it, such as adding a provision of bail for the accused before trial. These amendments were cleared by the Cabinet on August 29, 2018.
While the ordinance makes it a “non-bailable” offence, an accused can approach a magistrate even before trial to seek bail. A provision has been added to allow the magistrate to grant bail “after hearing the wife,” the government said. The magistrate would ensure that bail is granted only after the husband agrees to grant compensation to the wife as provided in the bill. The police would lodge an FIR only if approached by the victim (wife), her blood relations, or people who become her relatives by virtue of her marriage.