- Before the government introduced a Bill for a separate law to make instant triple talaq or talaq-e-biddat a criminal offence, the Centre deliberated on including the violation under Section 498A(b) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) that pertains to “cruelty by husband or a relative of the husband”.
- Another option was to insert a new Section 498B in the IPC, making instant triple talaq an “offence for adultery”.
- A group of Ministers led by Home Minister Rajnath Singh deliberated the options on the table and it was decided that including instant divorce under the IPC would lead to unrest in the Muslim community as it would then “become a crime against the State”. Instead, the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2017 was drafted and its provisions agreed upon by the group of Ministers, including External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj.
- “There was another drawback of including the offence under the criminal law — the woman would not have been entitled to compensation.
- Under the new Bill, a woman can claim subsistence allowance and the amount is to be decided by the Magistrate,” a senior government official who was part of the deliberations said.
- Political parties have opposed the Billas it sought to criminalise divorce.