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Arpan Rai | InTodayOnLine | New Delhi | April 19, 2017:: If given a chance, Rehana Raza says she wants to give up Islam and embrace Hinduism.
The Uttar Pradesh resident became the latest poster woman of triple talaq after allegedly being divorced over the phone by her husband and then attacked with acid by her in-laws. Now, she told Mail Today, she wants to change her religious stripes from green to saffron.
“Hindu law at least reaffirms the right of consensus a woman should have in marriage and gives a woman a say. That’s something Islam lacks, paving the way for triple talaq,” Rehana said in a telephonic interview.
‘DON’T SHOW YOUR FACE TO US’
Thousands of Muslim women from across India have raised their voices against the Sharia law custom that allows men to split up with their wives by saying “talaq” thrice. The instant divorce practice has been barred by more than 20 Muslim countries including Pakistan, Bangladesh and Saudi Arabia. “A common law defends numerous Hindu women who need emotional and financial support after getting deserted. I have suffered because of triple talaq, despite my family’s revered status in society,” Rehana said.
A five-judge constitution bench will sit during the Supreme Court’s summer vacation in May to examine a batch of petitions challenging Islamic practices such as triple talaq and polygamy after women complained of being divorced on Facebook and WhatsApp. Rehana says she was attacked with acid by her in-laws on April 14 at their house in Neoria town of Pilibhit district. The torture did not surprise the victim, who alleges that her husband started beating her within days of their wedding after the couple moved to the United States in 1999.
“He brought me and my son back to India in 2011 when my mother passed away but he soon left us behind, claiming he had found a job in New Zealand. I had no choice but to turn to my in-laws in Pilibhit who also shunned me,” Rehana told Mail Today.
‘MODI’S ATTACK ON TRIPLE TALAQ IS GENUINE’
Her mother-in-law allegedly asked her to not “show her face” because Matlub had already given her triple talaq over phone, which Rehana says never occurred. “I had approached them after the Allahabad high court order that termed the practice of triple talaq as unconstitutional which violates the rights of Muslim women. But instead I have seen days when my son and I have lived without food and electricity,” said Rehana, who has now been assured support by women and child development minister Maneka Gandhi.
The government told the Supreme Court last year that triple talaq violates the fundamental rights guaranteed by the Constitution and said it does not form a part of the “essential religious practices” in Islam. “Given how Rehana has endured for years at her in-laws’ house, Maneka Gandhi has taken up the issue with the superintendent of police in Pilibhit to expedite the case,” a ministry official told Mail Today.
Rehana’s 14-year-old son was not around on April 14 when she claims her brother-in-law Maqbool Hussain, sisters-in-law Parveen and Shakeela started beating her and threw acid on her. Despite her narrow escape after spotting the bottle of acid, she suffered burns on her back <(graphics here, viewer’s choice) and marks on her arms, neck and feet.
Terming the Narendra Modi government’s bid to attack triple talaq “genuine”, Rehana also said, “Given how our government has vouched for a common law, the hype around triple talaq is important to make people think about the atrocities inflicted on women.” The trauma has not ended for Rehana as she points out that her son has grown quiet over time. “I insisted for a roof at my in-laws’ house but I was thrown out every other day. When we refused to budge, my husband called my teenage son, and told him that we should vacate the house or he would get him jailed,” alleged Rehana. “Even now, I am being asked to leave the hospital by the police, who refuse get a warrant otherwise. The harassment has not ended for me.”
Courtesy: Mail Today.