Triple talaq verdict: Crusader Ishrat Jahan faces threats, seeks help from Mamata Banerjee
Though Ishrat Jahan has been living in the Pilkhana area for years, local people reacted after the media made her famous. Her lawyer, Nazia Elahi Khan, said she too is being trolled ever since the Supreme Court passed the judgement on August 22.Updated: Aug 25, 2017 20:50 IST
Ishrat Jahan, Bengal’s crusader against instant triple talaq, is facing threats from her neighbours in the Pilkhana area of Howrah town ever since the Supreme Court set aside the controversial Islamic practice of instant divorce or, Talaq-e-Biddat, on August 22. Jahan (31) is one of the five women whose petitions were heard by the apex court.
On Friday, she sought security cover from Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee. Incidentally, neither Banerjee nor the ruling Trinamool Congress has so far made any comment on the judgement and opposition parties have reacted strongly to this silence.
Jahan said her sister-in-law - with whom she lives with her two children - has asked her to leave. A year ago she disconnected the electricity connection to Jahan’s room. People in the area are planning a social boycott, said Jahan. Though she has been living in the Muslim neighbourhood for years, local people reacted after the media made her famous. Her lawyer Nazia Elahi Khan said she too was being trolled on Facebook since Tuesday.
With no job and nowhere to go, Jahan wrote a letter to Banerjee seeking security for herself and her children. “My daughter and son are scared. They never faced a situation like this. People pass nasty comments and threaten me whenever I step out. I am not asking for financial support. The state government can at least provide us with security,” Jahan told HT.
“I have talked to my seniors. If the Bengal government doesn’t protect Ishrat Jahan we will move the Supreme Court. I never thought this would happen in a state like West Bengal. The other women whose petitions were heard by the Supreme Court are not facing anything of this kind,” said Nazia Elahi Khan. “I am receiving all kinds of messages on social media. Some people say I work for the RSS. Some say no Muslim man will ever marry me…. This is so ridiculous,” said the Calcutta high court lawyer.
The judgement, which is being hailed as historic, came two years after Shayara Bano, a Muslim woman from Uttarakhand, approached the apex court after her husband of 15 years sent her a letter with the word ‘talaq’ written thrice before leaving her. The court later tagged the petitions of four other women, with similar cases, with Bano’s petition.
One of these four women is Ishrat Jahan. Murtaza, her husband pronounced a telephonic triple-talaq from Dubai in April 2014. “I am very happy with the judgment. The apex court has issued the right directive. Now I can hope to get justice in a legal battle I have been fighting for the last two years,” Jahan had told HT on August 22. She is fighting for custody of her two daughters who stay with her husband.