New Delhi: Amid a stalemate between the government and the opposition over the contentious Triple Talaq Bill, the motion is likely to be taken up on Wednesday when when the House takes up the the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2018. The Bill has already been passed by the Lok Sabha.
However, Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad has moved a motion in the House for referring the “triple talaq” bill to a select committee.
In the motion, Azad has also proposed the names of 11 Opposition members to be part of the Select Committee of the House.
Anand Sharma of the Congress, Ram Gopal Yadav of the Samajwadi Party, Sanjay Singh of the Aam Aadmi Party, Manoj Kumar Jha of the Rashtriya Janata Dal are among those whose names have been proposed by the Leader of Opposition.
The Opposition members have also given notices for amendments in the bill.
AAP Rajya Sabha member Sanjay Singh said he had recommended four amendments in the clauses of the bill.
On December 31, the opposition had thwarted the government’s attempt in the Rajya Sabha to ensure the passage of the Bill as no discussion could be initiated on the contentious legislation.
A united opposition led by the Congress stuck to its demand that the draft law be sent to a select committee for scrutiny, saying the Rajya Sabha is not a “rubber stamp”, even as the government pressed for a discussion on the Muslim women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2018, after Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad tabled it in the House.
The government accused the opposition of running away from discussion and playing politics over the issue which was important for ensuring rights to married Muslim women.
Congress President Rahul Gandhi said in Parliament that the party has already made its stand clear on the triple talaq bill.
As members continued to create uproar, the Deputy Chairman adjourned the House for the day till Wednesday.
BJP ally JD(U) may also not support the triple talaq bill if it is put to vote, sources said. The party has five members in the Rajya Sabha and is ready for a discussion even on the opposition’s resolution.
Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad had last Friday Friday claimed that the bill will find support in Rajya Sabha, where the BJP-led NDA lacks numbers.
The Congress had earlier accused the NDA government of getting the triple talaq bill passed in haste in the Lok Sabha in view of 2019 general election.
The party has said its provisions are against the Constitution and violate the fundamental rights.
The Opposition has been demanding that the bill be referred to a ‘joint select committee’ of Parliament for further scrutiny.
On Thursday, the government rejected the Opposition’s contention that it was aimed at targeting a particular community.
Piloting the bill, Prasad had said there should be no politics on the bill, stressing that it was not against any particular community.
Describing the passage of the triple talaq bill as a historic step to ensure equality and dignity of Muslim women, BJP chief Amit Shah had demanded an apology from the Congress for decades of injustice.
About the Bill
The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2018, replaces an ordinance issued in September after the government failed to get the bill passed in the Rajya Sabha earlier this year. A similar bill was passed by the Lok Sabha in December last year but could not clear the Rajya Sabha where the Opposition managed to stall it.
The present bill contains safeguards brought in by the Government which make it clear that only the affected woman or her blood relative could file a complaint with police against the husband instead of anyone lodging a complaint as provided in the previous version of the bill.
The improved legislation also provides for easier bail conditions and makes the offence compoundable by a magistrate after hearing the wife. The bill will now go to the Rajya Sabha where the Government may still find it difficult to push it through.
Under the proposed law, giving instant triple talaq will be illegal and void, and will attract a jail term of three years for the husband. In view of the opposition by some parties in the Upper House, the Government had then cleared some amendments, including the introduction of a provision of bail, to make it more acceptable.
The proposed law would be applicable in the entire country, except in Jammu and Kashmir.