The Rajya Sabha session was discontinued on Thursday following a debate over the triple talaq bill. The proceedings have been adjourned until 11 am on Friday, the last day of the ongoing Winter session.
The Opposition, led by the Congress, have been demanding that the bill be referred to a select committee. The Bharatiya Janata Party-led Centre has rejected the demand. Congress leader Anand Sharma, who had moved the motion on Wednesday, also proposed names of the members the committee. Sharma’s proposed panel excluded members of the BJP. The Opposition hold a majority in the Upper House.
“The select committee has to be one which represents the character of the house.” NDTV quoted Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad as saying. “We only have an issue about the allowance which we have repeatedly raised. We are for the bill.”
Leader of the House, Arun Jaitley, on Wednesday had said that the Congress was contravening parliamentary procedure by moving the motion without submitting it 24 hours in advance. Jaitley also said that the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2017, should not be referred to a select committee as two Supreme Court judges held the practice of instant divorce as unfair and used their extraordinary power to suspend it for six months.
On August 22, a five-member bench of the Supreme Court had struck down triple talaq, calling the Islamic practice unconstitutional and in violation of Article 14 of the Indian Constitution, which provides for equality before the law. The Lok Sabha, where the BJP holds a majority, passed the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2017 on December 28.