Farooq Abdullah puts onus on AIMPLB over triple talaq matter

Sibal also went on to state that family and social norms could never be tested with the touchstone of constitutional morality, a ground Centre had argued vociferously. he even said that if Hindus believe Lord Ram was born in Ayodhya, then this faith cannot be questioned on the ground of constitutional validity.

Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi said that all the three forms of divorce among the Muslim community - talaq-e-biddat, talaq hasan and talaq ahsan, were "unilateral" and "extra-judicial".

To this Justice Rohinton Fali Nariman, one of the five judges constituting the bench asked, if they should not hear the matter at all.

Today Muslim law board told to Supreme Court that philosophies of legitimate ethics and impartiality do not relate to triple talaq as it is a matter of trust.

Nikah halala allows a woman to go back to her husband but only after she marries someone else, consummates the marriage and gets a divorce. "All these three issues are before this court by virtue of the reference order of the two- judge bench", he added.

Sibal, starting his arguments, said the court should not interfere in Muslims' personal laws, otherwise the personal laws of other communities too could be challenged by anyone.

He said personal laws cannot be tested on the touchstones of fundamental rights under Article 13, 14 (right to equality), 15 (prohibition of discrimination) and 21 (right to life) and no one can come to the court saying that this practice is discriminatory and so strike it down. The court has also given three days to those defending it. Senior advocate Kapil Sibal, the counsel for All India Muslim Personal Law Board had gave the example of Lord Ram to make his point. But we are not here to tinker with religion, tenets of religion and religious practices. "Hence, there was no question of constitutional morality and equity", Sibal argued.

The top court, earlier on Thursday, began hearing several pleas filed by Muslim women rejecting the practice of Triple Talaq.

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Referring to Hindu Code where exceptions were carved out for protection of customs and practices, Sibal said: "You can't say that all personal laws are protected but Muslim personal law was subject to fundamental rights".

"Triple talaq is unconstitutional".

This prompted Justice Kurian Joseph to say that the practice of triple talaq will be un-Quranic as it does not have any basis in the Quran.

The bench insisted that the government has to prove that this practice of triple talaq was not essential to Islam and only then can it delve further into other aspects.

"We can not go into rights and wrongs because my faith does not allow this", Sibal said.

The A-G also asked the bench to clarify that both polygamy and "nikah halala" are still open and would be dealt with by another bench in future, following which the court clarified that "it will be dealt in future".

A five-judge Constitution Bench of the Supreme Court on Tuesday resumed hearings in the triple talaq matter brought before it by a bunch of petitioners opposing the practice.

  • Carlos Nash