The Mahatma Jyotiba Phule Rohilkhand University in Bareilly has become the first educational institute to introduce a course on Triple Talaq Bill passed by the central government around two months ago. The institution has formulated this course primarily for their law students after UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath appealed to colleges and universities in the state to teach students about this bill and women empowerment on Teachers Day.

The university’s law department added Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill 2019 is in the syllabus from September 11, said University’s head of the Law Department Amit Singh. He hopes that this initiative will bring awareness among students and hence bring a positive impact. “One of our students is already pursuing her doctorate on triple talaq,” he said, HT reported.

Key Takeaways:

  • The Mahatma Jyotiba Phule Rohilkhand University in Bareilly has become the first educational institute to introduce a course on Triple Talaq Bill.
  • The university’s law department added Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill 2019 in the syllabus from September 11.
  • It will help students gain basic knowledge of the law and their knowledge on Acts will increase since it has been spoken about so much- Farha Faiz, SC Lawyer.
  • All law faculties everywhere must use all these progressive laws to build an understanding of the legalities and social realities among students- Zakia Soman, Muslim women’s right activist.

After the Islamic customary practice of triple talaq, which entitles Muslim men to divorce their wives at the drop of a hat just by uttering the term ‘Talaq’ thrice leaving the wives in a marriage with little or no authority and stability, was banned in India by Supreme Court in 2017.  But the ban was still not able to curb such cases from happening. Then in January 2018, the government introduced a bill criminalising Triple Talaq. However, the bill was amended a few times to accommodate the changes suggested by Muslim activists after which it was passed in July this year.

ALSO READ: The Truth Behind Growing Cases Of Triple Talaq In India

Farha Faiz, who is a Supreme Court lawyer and a Triple Talaq petitioner, hails this move of introducing a course on Triple Talaq Bill and says, “It will help students gain basic knowledge of the law and their knowledge on Acts will increase since it has been spoken about so much.” However, she expressed her discontent with the law itself as she says, “Practically it is not a good law.”

“It has the provision of maintenance but it is not explained clearly in terms of on what stage a woman will get maintenance. Also, after the police arrests the accused, it has to produce him before the Magistrate and in the general routine, we have witnessed that the Magistrate is giving bail to the accused. Another thing is that even after the FIR has been lodged, even the police aren’t clear about what they have to do next. So there must be many seminars for the law-enforcing agencies as well to understand the law better to implement it,” Faiz told SheThePeople.TV.

Another activist Zakia Soman, founder of Mumbai-based women’s rights group Bharatiya Muslim Mahila Andolan (BMMA), did not find it a big deal if a law department has introduced this bill in their course but she finds it problematic for politicians to gain political mileage out of this issue. “I am sure they must have introduced all the women-friendly laws like domestic violence law, dowry law etc. All law faculties everywhere must use all these progressive laws to build an understanding of the legalities and social realities among students,” she says.

“However, a lot of other crimes are also happening in UP particularly the rape cases that are coming to light and I am sure the Chief Minister needs to look into those issues as well. Triple Talaq is only one of the issues concerning one part of the society but it is not the only issue. There are so many rape cases and violence cases emerging from the state in which the accused are political leaders so he needs to look into these issues as well equally,” Soman  says on how political leaders try to be selective in their perspective of women’s issues.

ALSO READ: Supreme Court to examine validity of law that criminalises Triple Talaq

“However, a lot of other crimes are also happening in UP particularly the rape cases that are coming to light and I am sure the Chief Minister needs to look into those issues as well. Triple Talaq is only one of the issues concerning one part of the society but it is not the only issue”

The entire uproar around the subject of Triple Talaq has improved reporting of such cases in media when earlier they weren’t talked about at all anywhere. UP Police data reveals western UP has reported the most number of cases of Triple Talaq from across the state since the Bill was passed. It includes 26 registered cases in Meerut, 17 in Saharanpur and 10 in Shamli. The three districts have a sizable Muslim population, said a senior police official. “The major reasons behind cases of triple talaq are dowry, property dispute and domestic violence, as per the FIRs lodged,” said DIG of Bareilly range, Rajesh Pandey.

Faiz claims that it is because of the significance given to Darul Uloom in these areas of UP that cases of Triple Talaq continue to be reported in western UP. “People are extremely influenced by Darul Uloom in these areas and while they don’t send their children to study in Madarsas, they still follow the Fatwas released by Darul Uloom. However, Darul Uloom has stopped releasing Fatwas in the recent time but they have published a book by the name of Talaq. People still follow the same personal law legal process in which they tell the Talaq-E-Bidr about their issue,” she notes.

Picture credit: Hindustan Times

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