The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill 2017, which seeks to criminalise the practice of instant triple talaq was tabled in Lok Sabha, in a bid to secure women's rights and justice.
Soon after, victims of this practice have expressed their gratitude to the makers of the new provision. And in tough times, they hope to stand by each other and future generations to come, through this bill.
"I was married to a man in Oman, who has given me instant talaq. I have been through a lot in the recent past, and I am happy that this bill has been tabled. What happened to me shouldn't happen with any other woman," Ghousia Begum, a victim from Hyderabad, told ANI.
Meanwhile, in Kanpur, some women exchanged sweets as the proposed law was tabled in the lower House for approval.
"We are very happy that the bill has been tabled. Women will get the relief they deserve after this bill is passed. We thank the government for this," said Hashmi, another victim of triple talaq.
Agra's Faiza Khan, who equates the significance of this day with the festival of Eid, opined that with the passage of the bill, men will understand the suffrage that women go through when divorced, adding that the bill will largely benefit the generations to come.
"Nobody thought of us till now, and I would like to thank the government for this, firstly. The men will understand what we go through, and will now decide if they really want to get married or not. The bill will benefit the generations to come. We are really happy that the procedure started by Modi Ji and Yogi Ji is going to succeed. This day will be more significant in Muslim women's life than Eid or Bakrid," she said.
While the victims were elated with the decision, some felt the need to look beyond just punishment. One such woman is Farzana, a native of Kanpur.
"This is about the betterment of women, undoubtedly. However, punishment isn't the most important thing. What's more crucial is the employment for such women. The government should create provisions for the same so that they can take care of their kids' expense. Tuition fee for these children should be borne by the government," she opined.
Triple talaq is the practice of Muslim men divorcing their wives by saying "talaq" three times. The constitution allows Muslims, the biggest minority in the country, to regulate marriages, divorces and inheritance through their own civil code.
But in August, the Supreme Court had ruled that the practice is "void", "illegal" and "unconstitutional". And now there is a growing demand to formulate a law, making the practice an offence.
Also known as the Triple Talaq Bill, its draft says, "any pronouncement of talaq by a person upon his wife, by words, either spoken or written or in electronic form or in any other manner whatsoever, shall be void and illegal".
There is also a provision of imprisonment for a term, which may extend to three years and fine for violators. The draft bill also envisages entitling divorcee Muslim women for maintenance ad has a provision for them to have the custody of their minor children. The offences under the purview of this bill will be cognisable and non-bailable.
The Bill, if passed, shall extend to the whole of India except Jammu and Kashmir.