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SC verdict accords protection to Muslim personal laws: AIMPLB

“This is a huge victory for us as the judgement vindicates our stand and ensures that fundamental rights of citizens of this country to freely practise and profess their religious beliefs.”

lucknow Updated: Aug 23, 2017 13:38 IST
HT Correspondents
HT Correspondents
Hindustan Times, New Delhi/Lucknow
Supreme court verdict,SC,Muslim women
“We, as a representative body, welcome the judgement of Supreme Court since it accords the protection to Muslim personal law and says that personal laws cannot be tested on the grounds of violation of fundamental rights.”

The All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB), the apex body of Muslim clerics that opposes the ban on triple talaq, welcomed Tuesday’s Supreme Court judgement saying it “accords” protection to Muslim personal laws.

The top court struck down the controversial Islamic instant divorce law as arbitrary and unconstitutional on Tuesday.

“We, as a representative body, welcome the judgement of Supreme Court since it accords the protection to Muslim personal law and says that personal laws cannot be tested on the grounds of violation of fundamental rights. The majority (comprising Chief Justice JS Kehar and justice Abdul Nazeer with Justice Kurian Joseph agreeing) has accorded personal laws the status of fundamental rights being protected under the right to practice religion contained in Article 25,” the Board said in an official statement.

“This is a huge victory for us as the judgement vindicates our stand and ensures that fundamental rights of citizens of this country to freely practise and profess their religious beliefs,” it said.

“As far as talaq-e-biddat is concerned we had already submitted to the court that the practice, though has basis in religious texts and belief, is not the best way of pronouncing talaq,” the board said.

“We ourselves have taken steps to discourage this practice through reform programmes and model form of Nikahnama issued by the Board,” it said.

The AIMPLB had on May 22, 2017 informed the court that about issuing instructions to clerics, who solemnise the marriage, to include the provision of excluding the triple-talaq in one sitting (talaq-e-biddat) in the nikahnama (contract) at the time of wedding. It had also launched a signature campaign seeking non-interference in Muslim personal law.

The Board said it will meet in Bhopal on September 10 to discuss the Supreme Court verdict striking down instant triple talaq and chalk out its strategy

“The Supreme Court verdict cannot be misused by the government to try to interfere with personal laws through legislation,” the statement said.

“The Board has convened a meeting in Bhopal where we would examine the issue and plan the steps, if any, that will be taken next,” AIMPLB general secretary Maulana Wali Rahmani told HT over phone.

The Board had opposed the move to ban triple talaq. In April this year, it issued an eight-point code of conduct to prevent the “misuse” of the practice and other Islamic laws (Shariah) to pre-empt an adverse verdict from the apex court.

WILL SUPPORT AIMPLB STAND ON TRIPLE TALAQ VERDICT: DEOBAND

Reacting cautiously on the Supreme Court’s verdict on instant triple talaq, Islamic seminary Darul Uloom of Deoband on Tuesday said it would support the stand of the AIMPLB on the issue.

Mohtamim (vice-chancellor) of the seminary Mufti Abul Kasim Nomani said he was not aware of the details of the Supreme Court order and added that Darul Uloom would support the collective opinion of the Board.

“The issue is related to the Muslim personal law. The Board will hold a meeting to decide the future course of action,” he said.

Naib mohtamim (deputy vice-chancellor) Maulana Abdul Khaliq Sambhali said: “In my opinion, no one has the right to interfere in the Shariat.”

State president of the All-India Imam Association Mufti Zulfikar said they were studying the Supreme Court’s order and would form an opinion on the advice of Islamic and legal experts.

(With inputs from S Raju in Meerut)

First Published: Aug 23, 2017 13:38 IST