Triple talaq was given "political patronage" by "merchants of vote bank", and it was the Narendra Modi government that made it a criminal offence thus bolstering self-reliance and self-confidence among Muslim women, Minority Affairs Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said today.
Addressing Muslim women from across the country via a video link at an event marking the first anniversary of the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Act, 2019, Mr Naqvi said after the enactment of the law, triple talaq cases have come down drastically.
The Modi government is committed to political empowerment and not "political exploitation", he said.
Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad and Union Minister for Women and Child Development Smriti Irani also addressed the Muslim women on the occasion.
Mr Naqvi said August 1 is the day on which Muslim women were freed from the social evil of triple talaq and it has been recorded in the country's history as "Muslim Women's Rights Day".
In an apparent dig at the Congress, Mr Naqvi said triple talaq or 'talaq-e-biddat' was "neither Islamic, nor legal", but despite that, the social evil was given "political patronage" by "merchants of vote bank".
The law against triple talaq could have been passed in the 1980s when the Supreme Court had given a historic judgement in the Shah Bano case, he said.
"The Congress had an absolute majority in Parliament with more than 400 out of 545 Lok Sabha members and more than 159 out of 245 members in the Rajya Sabha. But the then Rajiv Gandhi government used its strength in Parliament to make the Supreme Court judgement ineffective and deprive Muslim women of their constitutional and fundamental rights," he said.
The Modi government made the law against triple talaq to make the Supreme Court's judgement effective, Mr Naqvi said.
"A year has gone by since the law against triple talaq was passed and there is about 82 per cent decline in triple talaq cases thereafter. If any such case was reported, action was taken under the law," Mr Naqvi said.
At the event, Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad and Women and Child Development Minister Smriti Irani along with Mr Naqvi addressed Muslim women from several cities including New Delhi, Greater Noida, Lucknow and Varanasi, Jaipur, Mumbai, Bhopal, Hyderabad and Tamil Nadu's Krishnagiri.
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