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Features of Muslim Women (protection of Rights on marriage) ordinance 2018

The president of India has recently on September 19, 2018 in exercise of the power conferred on him under Article 123(1) of the Constitution of India promulgated an ordinance named Muslim Women (protection of Rights on marriage) ordinance 2018 for protecting the rights of Married Muslim women in India.

The president has used this power because the Muslim Women (protection of rights on marriage) bill 2017 has been passed in Lok Sabha but it has not yet been passed by the Rajya Sabha.

The main objective of this ordinance is to declare the practice of Triple Talaq or instant Talaq void. The practice of Triple Talaq was continuing even after the verdict given by supreme court in Shayara Bano vs Union of India which rendered the act of giving instantaneous Talaq unconstitutional and invalid.

Salient Features of The Ordinance
1. Section 3 of the ordinance says that Triple Talaq or Talaq-ul-Biddat in any of its form shall be void and illegal.

2. section 4 of the said ordinance provides that any Muslim husband who pronounces Triple Talaq shall be punished with an imprisonment which may extent to 3 years.

3. section 5 of the ordinance makes provision for maintenance to wife upon whom such Talaq has been pronounced as decided by judicial magistrate first class.

4. section 7 declares the offence to be cognizable and non bailable. complaint may be made to the police officer by such women upon whom such Talaq has been pronounced or by any person related to her by blood.

5. The offence under this ordinance has been made compoundable on the insistence of wife and accused can be given bail only after hearing such wife.
The said ordinance could be misused by Muslim women and they can use it as a tool against the husband even when husband has not done anything. This ordinance does not provides for any investigation into the facts whether Triple Talaq has really been pronounced.

When Triple Talaq was valid in India ,before the judgment of supreme court in the case of Shayara Bano v/s Union of India there was no requirement of any witnesses at the time of pronouncement of Triple Talaqs by Sunni.

Although this ordinance will deter the husbands from pronouncing Triple Talaq ,this can be misused by women.

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