[Model Answer] UPSC GSM2: Why did Govt. propose Triple Talaq Bill / Ordinance? List Salient Features (150 words)

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Majid Hussain
  1. Mock Question for UPSC Mains GSM2: Triple Talaq Bill
  2. Introduction (Define / Origin)
  3. Salient Features of the Bill / Ordinance
  4. Conclusion (welcome the bill / judgement)
  5. ERRORs in Triple Talaq Answers

Mock Question for UPSC Mains GSM2: Triple Talaq Bill

Q. Why was Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2017 introduced in the Parliament OR Why is Triple Talaq Ordinance is announced by the Union Government? Enumerate its salient provisions. 150 words, 10 marks.

मुस्लिम महिला विवाह अधिकार संरक्षण बिल / अध्यादेश प्रस्तुत करने की आवश्यकता क्यों खड़ी हुई? इसके मुख्य प्रावधानों की सूचि दीजिए.

Relevance to Syllabus of GSM2? mechanisms, laws, institutions and Bodies constituted for the protection and betterment of these vulnerable sections.

Introduction (Define / Origin)

  • (Definition) ‘Talaq’ means divorce by the husband. Islamic laws provide for three kinds – ‘talaq-e-ahsan’, ‘talaq-e-hasan’ and ‘talaq-e-biddat’ (also known as Triple Talaq). Talaq-e-biddat refers to the practice under Muslim personal laws where pronouncement of the word ‘talaq’ thrice in one sitting by a Muslim man to his wife results in an instant and irrevocable divorce.
  • (Origin) In the Saira Bano case (2017), the Supreme Court ordered that 1) Triple Talaq violates Article 14 (Equality), and Triple Talaq is not an essential religious practice of Islam, therefore enjoys no protection of Article 25 (Religious freedom). SC also directed the parliament to legislate on this matter within 6 months. [If ordinance asked then continue further] But, the bill couldnot be passed in the parliament due to lack of majority of the ruling party in the upper house, ultimately the Government of India decided to bring in ordinance on the matter under Article 123.

Since question says “WHY bill / ordinance proposed”? therefore ideally you should give both definition and origin of the matter.

UPSC Mains Answer Writing Triple Talaq

Salient Features of the Bill / Ordinance

The “internal difference between the bill’s features vs ordinance’s feature” is an irrelevant topic / question for prelims / mains. Just memorize the major features and write any one column depending on whether the question is for bill or the ordinance.

Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2017 Ordinance 2018
Applicable on entire India, except the J&K Same.
Triple Talaq in any form- oral, written, electronic- is declared void and illegal. Upto 3 years jail and fine to husband for pronouncing Triple Talaq. Same
Cognizable (arrested without warrant).  
Complain can be made the wife, or any person related to her by blood or marriage. (this provision was not in the original bill, but later on agreed to build consensus with opposing parties but we need not go in such ball-by-ball analysis) same
Non-bailable Magistrate may grant a bail to husband after hearing the wife.
No explicit mention of compounding. Compoundable (i.e. settlement possible between the victim and husband) with the permission of the Magistrate.
Allowance for woman, custody of minor children- decided by Magistrate. Same
Concerns that how can husband pay maintenance if he’s in jail, and given the cognizable & non-bailable nature of offense, it could be misused by wives similar to the misuse of IPC Section 498-A (Dowry & Cruelty to wife) by arrogant wives to ‘teach lesson’ to her husband and in-laws.  

Conclusion (welcome the bill / judgement)

  • Fundamental Duty Article 51-A-e: renounce practices derogatory to the dignity of women. This bill / ordinance aims to rectify the historic injustice to the Muslim women through the practice of triple talaq. Need of the hour is to allay the concerns over these features and pass an act without giving communal colouring to the issue.  OR
  • Thus, government has come up with a strong bill / ordinance to eradicate the practice it will go a long way in ensuring the justice to the Muslim women. This will be a stepping stone for next set of reforms such as outlawing nikah halala and  polygamy.
  • WRONG Conclusion: Instead of enacting a bill /ordinance need of the hour is to do _ _ _ _ something else entirely.

ERRORs in Triple Talaq Answers

  • Factual Errors:
    • Missing the main point that Supreme Court judgement required parliament to enact the law.
    • Using the term Shah Bano instead of Saira Bano.
    • ‘Nikah Halala’ not outlawed yet, yet some candidates write that both Triple-Talaq and Nikah-Halala are outlawed.
  • Poor Logical Structuring:
  • Directly mentioning the provisions of the bill and then later on mentioning why this bill was required.
  • Too much concern / criticism about the bill, when the question is simply asking you to list the provisions.
  • Overextending and over connecting with the need for abolishing polygamy, uniform civil code etc. Confine to the boundaries of the question instead of writing research paper on ‘what else ought to be done?’

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