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Declaration plea Seeking Talaq-Ul-Sunnat Unconstitutional, Illegal: Delhi HC Issues Notice On Review

The Court was hearing a plea seeking a declaration that the assumed absolute discretion of a Muslim husband to give divorce (talaq-ul-sunnat) to his wife at any time, without any reason, is unconstitutional.

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New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Friday issued notice to the Central government through the Ministry of Women and Child Development and others on a review petition challenging earlier dismissal order in the matter, seeking a declaration of ‘talaq-ul-sunnat’ as “unconstitutional and illegal”. 

The petition seeking a declaration that the assumed absolute discretion of the Muslim husband to give divorce (talaq-ul-Sunnat) to his wife at any time without any reason, without advance notice, and without the presence of his wife is arbitrary, anti-Shariat, unconstitutional, discriminatory, barbaric and illegal. 

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A Division Bench of Justice Vipin Sanghi and Justice Jasmeet Singh on Friday issued notice to all respondents and slated the matter for January 12, 2022.The petitioner, a Muslim woman through advocate Bajrang Vats seeks review of the order passed by it in which the court had dismissed the petition. 

The bench while dismissing the matter recently had said, “We do not find any merit in this petition since the Parliament has already intervened and enacted the aforesaid enactment/ Act. The petition is, accordingly, dismissed.” The Court had also said that the apprehension of the petitioner is the respondent-husband would divorce her by resort to Talaq-ul-Sunnat, in its view, is complete misconceived in the light of the enactment of the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Act, 2019. 

The Court noted that particular Section 3 of Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Act, 2019, read that any pronouncement of talaq by a Muslim husband upon his wife, by words, either spoken or written or in electronic form or in any other manner whatsoever, shall be void and illegal.

The Court was hearing a plea seeking a declaration that the assumed absolute discretion of a Muslim husband to give divorce (talaq-ul-sunnat) to his wife at any time without any reason and without advance notice to wife and without the presence of wife is arbitrary, anti-shariat, unconstitutional, discriminatory, barbaric and illegal. 

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A 28 years old Muslim woman, who is the mother of a 9 months child has been deserted by her husband by pronouncing instant Triple Talaq in August this year. The petitioner claimed that she has been informed by a family member that her husband is planning for another marriage. 

Therefore, she has challenged the assumed absolute discretion of the Muslim husband to give divorce (talaq-ul-sunnat) to his wife at any time without any reason and without advance notice to wife and without the presence of wife on the grounds of being arbitrary, anti-shariat, unconstitutional, discriminatory, barbaric and illegal, the plea said. 

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The petitioner had also sought a direction for issuance of detailed step by step guidelines in form of checks and balances on the issue of the assumed absolute discretion of the Muslim husband to give divorce (talaq-ul-sunnat) to his wife at any time without any reason and without advance notice to wife and without the presence of wife.

The petitioner sought to declare the Muslim marriage is not just a mere contract but it is a status. The petitioner also sought direction to respondents to frame the law in form of detailed step by step guidelines containing checks and balances on the issue of the assumed absolute discretion of a Muslim husband to give divorce (talaq-ul-sunnat) to his wife at any time without any reason and without advance notice to wife and without the presence of wife.

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