Supreme Court to reconstitute Bench for ‘nikah halala’, polygamy pleas

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Supreme Court Of India

By Muslim Mirror Network

On Thursday, the Supreme Court of India decided to reconstitute a Constitution Bench to consider a number of petitions contesting the constitutionality of polygamy and ‘Nikah Halala’, which are permitted under Muslim personal law.

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On August 30, a five-judge constitution bench comprised of justices Indira Banerjee, Hemant Gupta, Surya Kant, M.M. Sundresh, and Sudhanshu Dhulia served notice on the petitions. However, two judges, Justice Banerjee and Justice Gupta, have recently retired.

One of the petitioners, advocate Ashwini Upadhyay, brought up the issue before a bench on Thursday that included justices Hima Kohli and J.B. Pardiwala and was presided over by Chief Justice D.Y. Chandrachud.

The CJI assured, “We will form a Bench.”

Nine petitions altogether have been submitted contesting the constitutionality of polygamy and ‘nikah-halala.’

Polygamy and nikah-halala are being challenged constitutionally by Naisah Hasan, Sabnam, Farjana, Sameena Begum, and advocates Ashwini Upadhyay and Mohsin Kathiri.

One of the petitions was filed by the Muslim Women’s Resistance Committee. The Jamiat-Ulama-I-Hind has intervened in support of the practices.

The petitioners have asked for a ban on polygamy and ‘Nikah-Halala’, claiming that it makes Muslim wives exceedingly insecure and vulnerable, infringing on their fundamental rights. They asked that Section 2 of the Muslim Personal Law (Shariat) Application Act be declared unconstitutional and in violation of Articles 14 (equality), 15 (discrimination on the basis of religion), and 21 (right to life) of the Constitution, insofar as it seeks to recognise and validate polygamy and ‘Nikah-halala’.

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