TRIPLE TALAAQ- An Observation

Insha Zarine Sayeed

Today it is widely believed that a married Muslim man can dissolve his marriage at any time by just saying to his wife, “talaaq talaaq talaaq” on any occasion whenever he thinks so out of his own free will and desire. But it is not that simple. The phrase “talaaq” signifies “I divorce you”.  The Quran outlines the process of Divorce explicitly. It says the three talaaqs aren’t supposed to be said one after another, like many Muslims think they are. Rather, the Quran prescribes a waiting period between each Talaaq, during which the husband and wife are supposed to try to sort out their differences with the help of both side family members. The husband cannot force the wife during this period. If they fail to reconcile, only then divorce is granted maintaining certain process.

This motivated me to analyze the real motive of existence of this method of dissolution of marriage in Islam. Mir Sayeeduddin, a 60-year old retired sportsman said, ‘Being religious without actually knowing religion is very dangerous and some of the Muslim men are so regarding the Triple Talaaq idea’.

Though in Islam, pronouncement of triple ‘talaaq’ and divorce are strongly condemned, the misconception by some of the Muslims in India are strongly encouraged by the arbitrary role played by the All India Muslim Personal Law Board which is specifically dominated by Muslim men with their ulterior motives in the pretext of “Muslim Religious Law”, misleading mostly among under privileged and uneducated Muslim population of UP and Bihar states of India. Despite of what many people will tell you, uttering talaaq talaaq talaaq in one sitting does not grant divorce. Even learned people will say that this law stems from Quran verses. It is noteworthy that the Islamic provisions of marriage apply to men and women equally. For example, if celibacy is not recommended for men, it is equally so for women. This is in recognition of the fact that woman’s’ needs are equally legitimate and are seriously taken into consideration. Most often it does not, as it stems from ignorance and misinterpretation.

The All-India Muslim Personal Law Board has been mulishly opposed to abolishing triple talaaq, this easy procedure is being practiced by Muslim men to divorce his wife by pronouncing talaaq thrice in isolation and in one sitting. Most recently, the AIMPLB has expressed disquiet over a petition requesting the Supreme Court to determine the constitutional validity of triple talaaq. Many Muslim countries including Pakistan and Bangladesh in their provinces have adopted to abolish the triple talaaq, either explicitly or implicitly. The AIMPLB’s position is in sharp contrast to the dominant trend worldwide, may be due to the fact that persons occupying chairs in AIMPLB are mostly self-elected cozy club. However, the court’s interference is most likely going to be like a blessings in disguise.

People focus on reading the original Arabic because it is believed that it empowers them spiritually. While that is beneficial, it’s more important to understand them. But understanding the Quran is a difficult task which most aren’t willing to undergo. And that is why laws like triple Talaaq do exist to exploit Muslim women. Many Muslim men are encouraged to get radicalized in the name implementing religious sermons and dikhtas pronounced by Muslim clerics, irrespective of their correctness in the real understanding of facts and consequential after effects.

Many decades ago: Aga Khan had rightly noted several barriers for the progress of Muslim world; the foremost observation was the seclusion of women which results in keeping half the community in ignorance and degradation “which” hinders the progress of the whole community, since the inception of Islam to world.