While most Opposition parties have waffled over taking on the Muslim clergy over the issue of triple talaq, CPI(M) Polit Bureau member Brinda Karat on Monday unequivocally supported the demand from Muslim women for abolition of instant, arbitrary tripletalaq.

“The issue is before us and as political beings, as someone who has worked for women’s rights, what is our position? We unequivocally support the demand for abolition of triple talaq in its present form.

“Most Muslim countries do not have this practice. So, to give it a religious colour is also misplaced. We support an end to this practice of instant, arbitrary triple talaq,” Brinda Karat told BusinessLine in an interview.

The CPI(M) leader also mounted a sharp attack on the BJP for “using the very difficult mobilisation against instant talaq that Muslim women have done and equating it with their narrow, sectarian agenda of any stick to beat the minority community with.” Karat said the BJP is only supporting this issue to push its agenda of a Uniform Civil Code.

Demolishing the BJP’s “duplicitous position” on women’s rights, Karat said: “While I support this demand that has come from the women, let me reflect on the duplicity of the self-proclaimed champions of their rights among the Modi Government spokespersons.

“Where was Mr Ravi Shankar Prasad, the biggest champion of women’s ‘dignity and rights’ these days, when his cohorts were out on the streets with swords demanding protection of Sati in the name of religion? Where was Mr Prasad when his colleague Manohar Lal Khattar, the Chief Minister of Haryana, says Khap Panchayats are doing very good work when they are lynching couples marrying outside their caste?”

“I have heard Arun Jaitley in the context of domestic violence in live-in relationships. He was of the opinion that it was a ‘bit too advanced’ for our country. Maneka Gandhi says marital rape is not in Indian culture. Aur ab hamko in logon se seekhna padega ki women’s rights kya hote hain (Things have come to such a pass that we have to learn from the BJP what women’s rights are),” Karat said.