In a major boost for Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Ishrat Jahan, one of the main crusaders against triple talaq, joined the party on December 30. Jahan, 31, who was one of the five women petitioners against instant triple talaq, joined the party’s West Bengal office in Howrah.
— BJP West Bengal (@BJPBengal) December 30, 2017
BJP’s state unit general secretary Sayantan Basu confirmed her induction into the party. According to a PTI report, a state level felicitation program will soon be organised for her.
Jahan’s entry into the party comes two days after Lok Sabha passed a bill in Parliament to make triple talaq illegal.
The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, which was passed in Lok Sabha by voice vote, would only be applicable on instant triple talaq or ‘talaq-e- biddat’. It gives power to the victim to approach a magistrate seeking “subsistence allowance” for herself and minor children. A victim can also seek the custody of her minor children from the magistrate.
Under the law, instant triple talaq in any form — spoken, in writing or by electronic means such as email, SMS and WhatsApp — would be illegal and void.
— Zee News (@ZeeNews) January 1, 2018
The bill will be sent to the Rajya Sabha for passage before it is forwarded to the President for signing it into law.
Supreme Court in August 2017 had declared the practice of triple talaq unconstitutional and had said that it violates the fundamental rights of Muslim women.
Jahan, who was one of the five petitioners in the triple talaq case, was divorced by her husband over the phone from Dubai in 2014. While addressing a gathering of media persons, she said that the reason behind her joining BJP is the fact that the party supported her cause.
“I welcome the Centre’s move to pass the triple talaq bill. After this, the lives of our next generations are secured, and they will not have to go through the situation we experienced. I have joined BJP not because it is a political party, but because it supported our cause,” she said.
Jahan’s entry into the party may strengthen BJP’s claim of support for minorities as well as its stand in West Bengal. BJP state Mahila Morcha president Locket Chatterjee called it a “proud moment” for the party and welcomed her entry.
“It is a proud moment for us to have her in our party, as she has been an example of indomitable spirit. Our party will stand by Muslim women in West Bengal and across the country. Our party does not believe in vote bank politics,” she said, as per an Indian Express report.
The news evoked mixed reactions on Twitter:
@smritiirani @narendramodi @AmitShah @naqvimukhtar Well done! Ms Chatterjee. Bravo! Ms Ishrat Jahan. Womankind knows no barriers of caste, creed, religion or race. The time has come for Indian society 2 restore Muslim mothers & sisters 2 their right 2 live with honor & dignity.
— Indrajit Ghosh (@Indraji39264032) January 1, 2018
Marvelous game plan.. Ishrat Jahan first made popular with #Tripletalaq and now officially joins BJP.
— Suhaib Ashraf (@Suhaib_Ashraf19) January 1, 2018
— Uma Kant Singh (@umakantsingh_IN) January 1, 2018
— Punster® (@Pun_Starr) January 1, 2018