Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind, the largest organisation of imams in India, has appealed to Muslims all over the country to avoid the practice of instantaneous triple talaq altogether so the government doesn't get a chance to interfere in religious affairs of the community.
"All the Muslims are strongly appealed to completely avoid the form of Talaq Bid’at (instantaneous triple talaq) and perform the rituals of Nikah, Talaq and other family affairs in accordance with the ruling of Shari’ah, so that the Governments may not chance upon to interfere in our religious matters," the organisation has said in a four-point resolution passed at the end of its National Working Committee Meeting on Friday.
The meeting was presided over by National President Maulana Qari Mohammad Usman Mansoorpuri and was attended by 25 members from different states.
The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2017, popularly knows as triple talaq bill, was passed by Lok Sabha during the Winter Session but faced a roadblock in Rajya Sabha, where the Opposition Congress party demanded that it be sent to a Parliamentary Select Committee in face of concerns raised by major Muslim organisations of the country.
Centre’s proposed bill calls for making instantaneous triple talaq a punishable offence which could attract jail term of upto three years.
"The Muslims are religiously duty bound to adhere to Shariah at all and will keep doing so," the outfit has said.
Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind has further attacked Modi government's interference in Muslim Personal laws, saying that neither Parliament nor the court had the power to interfere in the religious affairs of the community.
"The Muslim Personal Law (Shariat) Application Act, 1937, clearly states that a matter pertaining to talaq will be governed under Sharia," Azeemullah Siddiqi Qasmi, the organisation's media incharge told National Herald.
The resolution warns authorities against taking the ordinance route to get the proposed bill turned into a law, saying that would tantamount to a constitutional violation as well.
The Delhi-headquartered organisation has further questioned government's stand that the triple talaq legislation would favour divorced Muslim women.
"Under this law, it is most likely that the divorced woman will be held up for long time, a roadblock for her to re-marry and begin marital life afresh. Thus, the sole purpose of the institution of Talaq itself will get undermined," the resolution said.
"Apart from that, it is the woman and the children who will actually suffer the outcome of man’s imprisonment," it added.
Jamiat alleged that introducing the triple talaq legislation was a step in the direction of introducing a uniform civil code.
The bill to criminalise triple talaq is being thrusted by Prime Minister Narendra Modi himself, who had declared at a rally in Uttar Pradesh last year that "lives of Muslim women cannot be allowed to be ruined by triple talaq." Critics of the Prime Minister and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), including Jamiat, have said that the bill is politically motivated and unfairly targets Muslims.