Parliament LATEST updates: Lok Sabha is discussing instant triple talaq bill. Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi, Minority Affairs Minister, says that the Opposition is against the triple talaq Bill because they are afraid of losing a certain set of votes. The Bill is in lines with the constitutional commitment. The Bill will protect Muslim women, he adds.
After Union minister Ravi Shankar Prasad and MP Meenakshi Lekhi, DMK’s Kanimozhi opposes the Bill. Kanimozhi says women’s rights includes men’s rights also. She questioned the bail clauses. “What about Hindu women and Christian women? No one sends a Hindu man to jail for abandoning his wife,” she says. “Domestic violence laws are stronger than this Bill,” she says. “When the Supreme Court approved women entering Sabarimala, why was BJP opposing it? Why is marital rape not considered a crime,” she asks.
“Why is this government in such rush to pass these bills? Why bills that arouse the communal passion are being pushed?” she asks. “You are passing Bills on women without having adequate women in the House,” she says and asks the government to pass the women’s reservation Bill first. “What laws are you bringing to stop ‘honour’ killing, mob lynching? What freedom we have when we can’t eat what we like, pray whom we like or refrain from praying?”
DMK’s Kanimozhi opposes the triple talaq Bill. “Why is this government in such rush to pass these bills? Why bills that arouse the communal passion are being pushed?” she asks.
“You are passing Bills on women without having adequate women in the House,” she says and asks the government to pass the women’s reservation Bill first. “What laws are you bringing to stop ‘honour’ killing, mob lynching? What freedom we have when we can’t eat what we like, pray whom we like or refrain from praying?”
BJP’s Meenakshi Lekhi rises to address the Lok Sabha over triple talaq bill and starts by giving example of former prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru. Lekhi goes on to talk about the Shah Bano case and how Rajiv Gandhi government overturned the alimony clause. She says opposition is unable to digest that Narendra Modi is being a brother to innocent Muslim women. She mentions Akhilesh Yadav’s name and Samajwadi Party members object to it.
Lekhi quoted Nehru and said that he wanted to see a just India and turn religious India to a secular India. “Isn’t that what our Prime Minister Narendra Modi trying to do? This Bill will ensure that,” she says.
Ravi Shankar Prasad rises to present The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2019 for consideration and passing. NK Premachandran says that Supreme Court has never given a directive to the government to make a law on this. Only the AIMPLB wants the government to make legislation on this. He asks why the government is not ready to make a legislation on mob lynching, when it has been directed by the Supreme Court. He says this is a politically motivated Bill to target a particular community.
He says consecutive promulgation of Ordinances is a fraud on the Constitution.
Senior Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury opposes the introduction of The Inter-State River Water Disputes Bill, 2019. TR. Baalu says the government is bulldozing Bills through the Parliament.
Question Hour underway in Lok Sabha. Trinamool Congress’ Sougata Roy asks if Kolkata airport can be privatised as well. The minister says bids were invited for six airports and one bidder won it in all the six airports. Opposition insists the minister should name the bidder. “Yes, it is Adani,” he said. “We have decided to hand over three airports to them. We invited bids. There were nine bidders,” he said. Government favoured the Adanis, alleges Opposition. “I am happy for a discussion,” the minister says. Members create ruckus in the House. Speaker brings the House in order.
Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha assembled at 11 am on Thursday. The government has listed the contentious triple talaq bill for consideration and passage in Lok Sabha on Thursday. The ruling BJP has issued a whip to its MPs, asking them to ensure their presence in the House.
Representational image. Reuters
The bill, which criminalises instant divorce by Muslim men and seeks jail term for the guilty, was the first draft legislation tabled by the Narendra Modi government in this first session after it took oath of office for a second term in May.
Several opposition parties have bitterly opposed it but the government has asserted that the bill is a step towards gender equality and justice. Parties like the Congress, the Trinamool Congress and the DMK have demanded that it be sent to a parliamentary committee for scrutiny.
The BJP-led NDA enjoys a strong majority in the Lower House, making the passage of the bill a foregone conclusion. However, the government is set to face an uphill task in Rajya Sabha where Opposition parties have numerical advantage over the treasury benches.
Some of the BJP’s allies, including the JD(U), have also expressed their reservation about the bill.