Shah said that a legislation to abolish triple talaq in India could not be passed for 73 years after the independence of the country only because of the appeasement politics of the Congress.
He said all credit should go to the Narendra Modi-led BJP government for passing this legislation during its second term in power.
The Triple Talaq Bill was passed by Parliament on July 30 which makes issuing divorce under such a decree punishable with three years in prison.
Shah was delivering a special address on ‘Abolition of Triple Talaq – Correcting a Historic Wrong’ in the Mavalankar Hall at the Constitution Club.
“The tradition of triple talaq was meant to keep Muslim women bereft from the divine right of equality. It was a monstrous tradition. Many political parties opposed it on the floor of the Parliament. But they knew fully well that it was an evil tradition that should be removed. They did not have the courage to remove this tradition,” said Shah.
Shah said it was only because of the strong political will of the Modi government that the legislation was passed to end this tradition.
During the course of his speech, Shah listed 19 countries, including Pakistan, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Morocco, Iran, Jordan and Kuwait, that have abolished the tradition of triple talaq at different times between 1922 and 1963.
“It was argued that triple talaq was part of the Islamic Shariat. It was also argued that there should be no interference with Islam … Sixteen of these 19 countries are formally recognised as Islamic countries but have banned triple talaq. It took India more than 56 years (after these countries) to ban the tradition. If this tradition was a part of the Shariat then why would these Muslim countries have banned it? The tradition is un-Islamic and not supported by the Quran,” said Shah.
He added that the legislation to abolish triple talaq stands to benefit only the Muslim community. He referred to the historic Shah Bano judgement of the Supreme Court during the course of his address saying it was a landmark verdict by the apex court.
“If triple talaq was not abolished today, it would have been a huge blot on our democracy as Shah Bano of Indore fought for maintenance from the court of the judicial magistrate till the Supreme Court. On April 23, 1985, a Supreme Court bench headed by Chief Justice Y.V. Chandrachud finally ruled in favour of Shah Bano.
“It was perceived that since the judiciary had taken a strong stance against triple talaq the government would now follow suit and work towards its abolition. But it never happened since there was no political will,” said Shah.