Senior Congress leader Manish Tewari has conceded that the Modi Government had been able to take credit on the issue of triple talaq while his own party had failed to take a forward position despite its liberal credentials. It is a very "good and progressive' decision, but we feel we should have taken a far more forward position on the issue because we believe in liberal values and there is a conflict in supporting triple talaq and these values, Tewari said in an interaction at the agency's headquarters. He, however, said he was not sure as to how much the Supreme Court verdict of this month declaring triple talaq as unconstitutional would bring any political benefit to Prime Minister Narendra Modi personally or to the BJP Government, in view of the "assault’’ the community was facing under his government. "The jury was still out ,’’ he said.
Tewari said that it was ironic that a party like the BJP which is illiberal, misogynist and right wing was attempting to usurp liberal space while creating a divide on gender basis. He said that during 1948-50, when the country's Constitution was being drafted, the makers had incorporated Article 17(a) abolishing untouchability which many said was intrinsic to Hindu society, faith and customs. "If the Modi Government was really concerned about the plight of Muslim women, it should have saved them by coming up with a legislation for the aggrieved women,' he said. "Is BJP trying to atone for the pogrom in Gujarat during the chief ministership of Narendra Modi?,' he asked. Tewari also said that the Shah Bano judgement was a landmark decision and also the most "misunderstood’’ decision delivered during Rajiv Gandhi Government in granting right to Muslim women to claim maintenance after divorce. "Somehow after the Shah Bano judgement, the Congress was seen as having pandered to obscurantist and fundamentalist elements who were taking the country to medieval times,' he said. He said it would take some time to assess the impact of triple talaq judgement on the Muslim society. He pointed out that Article 25 has been unanimously upheld by all the five judges.( UNI)