The practice of triple talaq allows Muslim men to divorce their wives instantly by saying 'talaq' three consecutive times (either directly, via social media or even a text message). Photograph: (AFP)
From "social boycott" of Muslims who resort to triple talaq to the appointment of an arbitrator to settle marital disputes are some features of the new guidelines issued by the All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) for married couples.
The AIMPLB today (May 22) told the Supreme Court that it has issued "guidelines for the husband and wife at the time of dispute" which has to be followed, days after the court reserved its verdict on a clutch of pleas challenging triple talaq.
Giving details of the guidelines framed by it, the AIMPLB told the top court that if there are differences between a husband and his wife, they should first try to mutually resolve the issues by keeping in mind the provisions of the "Shariat" (Islamic law) and try to overlook the mistakes of others.
It said in the second step, if the dispute is not resolved mutually and no desired results are achieved, then there may be a "temporary withdrawal".
"In case of failure of the first two steps, then senior members of both families should try to reconcile or one arbitrator may be appointed from each side for resolution of the differences," the fresh AIMPLB guidelines said.
It said "the Muslim community should boycott such persons socially who have pronounced three divorces (talaq) in one go, so that such incidents may be minimised".
In its affidavit, the AIMPLB stated that only if the dispute still remained unresolved, the husband may pronounce one divorce during the period of purity of his wife and leave his wife till the time her "waiting period" (iddat) ended.
"If a favourable situation arises during the waiting period, the husband should retain her and then both of them should live as spouses. If the husband does not retain his wife during the waiting period, then the marriage will be automatically dissolved after the lapse of waiting period and both of them will be free and authorised to start a new life," the board said.
It, however, clarified that if the wife is pregnant during the waiting period, then the period will extend till the time of delivery and the husband will have to bear the expenses incurred during waiting period and in case the dower (dowry) has not been paid, then he has to pay it immediately.
"If they reach any amicable settlement after the waiting period, then both of them may restore their relationship by the solemnisation of their marriage afresh with mutual consent along with a new dower," the guidelines said.
The board has also suggested a second way to annul the marriage in which the husband should pronounce one divorce during the period of the purity of his wife, followed by another divorce in the second month and the third divorce in the third month.
"If they (husband and wife) reach an amicable settlement before the pronouncement of the third divorce, then he has to retain her and restore the previous marriage," it said, adding that if the wife is not willing to live with her husband then she can terminate the relationship by "Khulaa" (a form of divorce initiated by the wife).