The Case Against Abolitionists

Below is a short excerpt from an article by Malavika Rajkotia, arguing against the abolition of triple talaq, which first appeared in the Indian Express on June 2, 2017.

“The triple talaq abolitionists plead erosion of the fundamental right of women to equality since the right to unilaterally revoke a contract leaves her vulnerable. Any husband (of any community) calling for a divorce against the wishes of the wife is painful. However, resistance to divorce by one spouse does not preclude the other from asking for it. If one wants out of the marriage, the other cannot seriously insist on a meaningful continuance of the marriage. To view it any other way implies that a woman is vulnerable without male protection, even if it is dissatisfying.

Women suffer not so much from the divorce as economic disempowerment. Such disempowerment is not rooted in triple talaq, but owes to several other causes which affect not just the lives of Muslim women but those of women belonging to other religions as well. For instance, the Dowry Prohibition Act makes an exception for “customary” gifts. The dowry problem rages on because bridegrooms use this exception clause as the eye of the needle through which they drag their cars and electrical appliances. The thrust of the women’s empowerment process needs to be on economic rights.”

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