Terming the Supreme Court verdict on triple talaq as “unconstitutional” and an “attack” on Muslim personal law, West Bengal minister Siddiqullah Chowdhury on Monday urged Muslims in the country to continue with the practice.
“We respect the Supreme Court and the Chief Justice of India but the verdict to bar the triple talaq practice is an attack on the century-old Muslim personal law. It is unconstitutional,” Chowdhury, who is also the Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind state secretary, told reporters at an event of the Islamic organisation’s state wing.
“The Muslims would keep following the order of Quran and Muslim personal law on the triple talaq practice. We do not agree with the verdict of barring talaq for the next six months,” he said.
Chowdhury is the Minister of State (Independent Charge) of Mass Education and Libraries, besides being the Minister of State of Parliamentary Affairs.
With Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee keeping a studied silence on the issue, Chowdhury, asked about the absence of any statement from the ruling Trinamool Congress, said: “You can consider my words as Trinamool Congress’ statement as I am a minister elected from this party.”
Claiming the Supreme Court’s decision was not unanimous, he hoped the case would go to a nine-judge bench for further discussion.
“This was not a unanimous decision. The Chief Justice himself said that there should be no interference in the process of Muslim marriage and talaq. Three judges have termed the talaq as illegal. This is their decision. But we hope this will go to the nine-judge bench for further discussion,” he said.
Accusing the BJP of trying to scare the Muslim community, he said: “This is nothing but BJP’s conspiracy. They are trying to establish a uniform civil code in the country and scare the Muslims. They want the Muslim men and women to fight among each other and the Muslim youth to clash with the administration over this issue. We condemn and oppose this.”
Chowdhury said their organisation would form a new committee named Shariat Application Act Protection Council West Bengal with representatives from all the districts that would look into the issues of talaq and the future of the Muslim women.
Stating that they would observe developments regarding the issue of talaq in the state, he vowed to bring out a rally with 10,000 Muslim women on the streets of Kolkata if “the situation does not change”.