A group of Muslim women’s rights organisations released their manifesto for political parties in the run up the Lok Sabha elections, demanding a law against mob lynchings, The Times of India reported.
Apart from a special law against mob violence, the 39-point manifesto demanded a repeal of restrictions on the slaughter and sale of cows, asked for 33% reservation for women in Parliament, scrapping anti-conversion laws, implementing the Sachar Committee report on the socio-economic and educational status of the Muslim community, and ending female genital cutting, according to The Indian Express.
The manifesto also demanded that the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Ordinance, 2019 be scrapped, according to IANS. The ordinance makes the practice of instant triple talaq a penal offence.
Muslim women from across 10 states gathered in Delhi to release the manifesto, which listed demands related to gender equality, minority safeguard and citizenship rights. The women were organised under the banner of Bebaak Collective (voice of Fearless).
Khalida, whose husband Umar Khan was allegedly killed by cow vigilantes in 2017, was among the group of women who gathered in Delhi. “I live under constant threat,” she said, according to The New Indian Express. “Even attending court hearings has become extremely difficult because of threats we receive from fringe groups. I don’t want anyone to go through what my family is going through and that is why I request the political parties who is elected to power to frame law against mob lynching.”
Hasina Shaikh of Bebaak Collective said the government led by the Bharatiya Janata Party has strategically used Muslim women to polarise the community and criminalise the act of triple talaq through an ordinance. The collective was among the petitioners who challenged the validity of the instant triple talaq case in the Supreme Court.
“There is no doubt that the socio-economic conditions of Muslims were deplorable even before the current government came to power, but now the space to negotiate with the state through rights assertions or independent commissions has drastically reduced,” a statement released by the collective said. “The constant vilification of Muslims, under the current BJP-led government, has led to virulent attacks against them.”