NEW DELHI: The Centre has listed the controversial Triple Talaq Bill for consideration and passage in the Lok Sabha on Thursday. A whip has been issued by the ruling BJP to its MPs, asking them to remain present in Lok Sabha on Thursday.
The Triple Talaq Bill criminalises the practice of instant divorce by Muslim men and seeks jail term for the guilty. It may be recalled that this bill was the first draft legislation tabled by the Narendra Modi government in its first session after it came to power in May for the second term.
Several opposition parties have strongly opposed the bill, but the BJP-led government at the Centre has repeatedly maintained that the bill must be passed because it is aimed at ensuring gender equality and justice. Congress, Trinamool Congress and DMK have opposed the bill and demanded that the government must send it to a parliamentary committee for scrutiny.
The government is not going to face any trouble in passing the bill in Lok Sabha because it enjoys comfortable majority in the Lower House of Parliament. But the situation for the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) is not easy in the Rajya Sabha where opposition parties have a numerical advantage over the government. Interestingly, some of the BJP's allies, including Nitish Kumr's JD(U), are also unlikely to support the bill.
The bill was tabled in the Lok Sabha by Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, who pointed that there were as many as 543 cases of triple talaq reported in the country. According to Prasad, there had been 200 instances of triple talaq even after the Supreme Court banned the practice.