1 Million Muslims signed RSS-backed plea against ‘Triple Talaq’
Over a million Muslims from across India – most of them are women – have signed a petition moved by Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh(RSS) affiliated Muslim body Muslim Rashtriya Manch (MRM) against the practice of “Triple Talaq’.
Muslim Rashtriya Manch – founded in 2002 and Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh pracharak Indresh Kumar is the ‘Margdarshak’ (Guide) from the Sangh’s side who ‘guides’ the body – has also demanded a nationwide discussion on the issue that involves all the stakeholders.
‘This is a problem of the Muslim community and the stakeholders within the community as well as the representatives from the state and the government must come and sit together to start a debate on this so that Muslim women can claim a human status,’ the organisers told to Mail Today.
As the party itself puts it, one of the major contributing factors, as it claims, in its victory was a definite support from Muslim women who were moved by the party’s attitude on ‘triple talaq’ as a un-democratic practice that needed to be throw away.
‘3 factors, I suppose defined our victory in the Uttar Pradesh Elections: First was Ujjwala scheme that provided Liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) cylinders to poor women; second one was establishment of toilets under the ‘Swachh Bharat’ programme, which also pleaded to women; and the last but not the least, our stand on “Triple Talaq,’ said Siddharth Nath Singh-grandson of former Prime Minister of India Lal Bahadur Shastri- BJP secretary and newly elected MLA from Allahabad West.
While the signature campaign of Muslim Rashtriya Manch (MRM) is still going on, the organisation had warned the traditionally orthodox clergy of the community to keep away from making a religious issue out of a practice that was a social problem.
‘The fact that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) was able to win Muslim votes in Uttar Pradesh, the fact that they also won the Muslim-majority Deoband seat – that is long supposed to be the stronghold of orthodox Ulema – suggest that the party and the central government need to consider the voice of the Muslim women.
‘Their support in assembly elections is a hinted approval of the Bharatiya Janat Party’s (BJP) stand on the issue,’ said Muslim Rashtriya Manch (MRM) national coordinator Mohammad Afzal.
‘The fact that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) did not field a single Muslim candidate for the Uttar Pradesh assembly polls did not hear women of the community to at least in part vote for the party,’ claimed another office bearer of the Muslim Rashtriya Manch (MRM) on conditions of anonymity.
Mohammad Afzal also said the traditional clerics of the Muslim community now wanted to wake up.
‘The fact that a terrorist was killed in an encounter and his father rejected him and his body in the light of the latter’s love for the nation, and then a teenage girl has faced a fatwa against her for singing in public… all these things point to the changing situation in India” added Mohammad Afzal.
Afzal also says that ‘They should wake up now and stop trying to convert the social evil of “Triple Talaq” from a social problem into a religious problem.’
Firoze Ahmad Bakht, the great grandson of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, a Muslim leader of the Indian National Congress during the Indian independence movement, praised Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his ‘positive attitude towards the Muslims’. ‘The Ulemas are taking the Muslim community, not in the medieval ages, but the dark ages and towards the stone age,’ said Firoze Ahmad Bakht.