After 6 days of historic hearing, Supreme Court reserves verdict in triple talaq case, likely to come in July

After six days of historic hearing on a bunch of petitions challenging the constitutional validity of the triple talaq, the Supreme Court on Thursday concluded arguments and reserved its verdict in the case.

By Zee Media Bureau | Updated: May 18, 2017, 14:51 PM IST
After 6 days of historic hearing, Supreme Court reserves verdict in triple talaq case, likely to come in July

New Delhi: After six days of historic hearing on a bunch of petitions challenging the constitutional validity of the triple talaq, the Supreme Court on Thursday concluded arguments and reserved its verdict in the case.

The apex court is expected to pronounce its verdict in the triple talaq case in July.

Earlier, when the hearing resumed in the apex court, key petitioner Shayara Bano’s counsel Amit Chadha asked the All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) to accept that the practice is a “sin”.

The Centre had on Wednesday urged the highest court to abolish triple talaq, the way practices like 'Sati and Devdasi' were abolished from the country. 

Objecting to the Centre's arguments, the AIMPLB informed the Supreme Court that marriage in the Muslim community is a contract and in order to protect their interests and dignity, women can put special emphasis on certain clauses in 'nikahnama'.

The AIMPLB said Muslim women too can pronounce triple talaq and ask for very high 'mehr' amount in case of divorce.

The board also showed the court a resolution passed on April 14 2017 which stated triple talaq as a sin and that the community should boycott the person doing such an act.

The board said this when the Supreme Court asked the AIMPLB whether a woman can be given an option of saying 'no' to triple talaq at the time of execution of 'nikahnama' (Islamic marriage contract).

The five-judge Constitution bench also said if all 'Qazis' can be asked to include this condition at the time of marriage.

"Is it possible that Muslim women are given an option to say 'no' to triple talaq at the time of execution of nikahnama," asked the bench.

The apex court also wanted to know from the AIMPLB if it is possible for the board whether their (SC) advisory will be followed by the Qazis at the ground level.

One of the board's lawyers, Yousuf Hathim Muchala, told the top court that the advisory of AIMPLB is not mandatory for all Qazis to follow. Muchala, however, made it clear that the board accepts the suggestions in all humility and will look at it.

Hearing on Wednesday was the fifth day of the hearing on a clutch of petitions challenging triple talaq, polygamy and 'nikah halala' which is going on before a bench comprising members of different religious communities including Sikh, Christian, Parsi, Hindu and Muslim.

Appearing on behalf of the AIMPLB, Kapil Sibal had on Monday said that the apex court should not decide or interfere in one's faith and belief.

To this, Justice Rohinton Fali Nariman, one of the five judges constituting the bench asked if they should not hear the matter at all.

"Yes, you should not hear," replied Sibal.

Earlier, Sibal asked the top court as to how a 1400-year-old practice be branded 'unconstitutional'.

"Triple talaq is going on since 1400 years, how can you say it is unconstitutional?" Sibal asked the apex court.

Sibal further argued that just like the Hindus' faith about Rama's birth at Ayodhya cannot be questioned, similarly triple talaq which is also a matter of faith for Muslims should not be questioned.

The bench also questioned the AIMPLB on the position of e-divorce given on WhatsApp in Islam.

The Centre, during the earlier hearing, assured the apex court that it would come out with a law to regulate marriage and divorce among Muslims if Triple Talaq is upheld as invalid.