Readers only offer: Get additional Rs 200 off on 'The Better Home' powerful natural cleaners. Shop Now
X
Once the Preserve of Men, These Muslim Women Are Now Settling Disputes

Once the Preserve of Men, These Muslim Women Are Now Settling Disputes

Under the aegis of the Bharatiya Muslim Mahila Andolan, 15 female qazis trained in the Quran, Indian Constitution, and women’s rights are now settling family disputes.

Promotion
Ad Banner

Under the Constitution of India, all citizens have equal rights. However, a unique feature of Indian law is that issues pertaining to matters like divorce, inheritance, custody, marriage and alimony are settled according to personal laws dictated by different religious groups.

For many among the 172 million Muslims in the country, these civil matters are settled by qazis or judges, a role traditionally dominated by men, and they use Islamic jurisprudence to adjudicate on them. Although these qazis in local Sharia courts are not a replacement for legal courts, families often prefer to use this medium to settle disputes of a personal nature.

The Bharatiya Muslim Mahila Andolan (BMMA), an Indian Muslim women’s rights organisation, began tipping the scales of this form of religious jurisprudence when they started training 30 women in the Quran, constitutional law and gender rights more than three years ago.

What the BMMA sought to accomplish was to produce a steady stream of female qazis across India who would adjudicate on personal family matters. With men dominating this profession, a lot of settlements went against women.

For representational purposes only (Source: Pixabay)
For representational purposes only (Source: Pixabay)

Last April, the first batch of 15 trained female qazis began their quest for justice, Vice reported. “A man goes and says ‘I want to divorce my wife,’ then the qazi—also with a man’s perspective—he signs off on the divorce. But these injustices happen with women, so why can’t we also become qazis?” says Suriya Sheikh, one of the 15 trained and qualified women qazis to Vice.

Read also: In Rajasthan, Meo Muslim Girls Are Breaking Gender Barriers Through Education

Promotion
Ad Banner

These women underwent a three-year training process that included learning the Quran, women’s rights and constitutional law. The first batch of 15 women graduated last April and took on their new roles as qazis. They conduct their business within the premises of the BMMA’s Mumbai offices.

Read also: Step By Step, These Muslim Women Are Breaking Stereotypes And Dreaming Big

To the uninitiated, the BMMA is also the same organisation that initially led the fight against the draconian practice of triple talaq. They were one of the petitioners who took the matter to the Supreme Court, and the Lok Sabha, in December voted for a law that seeks to criminalise the practice.

Like this story? Or have something to share? Write to us: contact@thebetterindia.com, or connect with us on Facebook and Twitter.
NEW: Click here to get positive news on WhatsApp!

Promotion
Ad Banner
Let’s be friends :)
Sign in to get free benefits
  • Get positive news daily on email
  • Join our community of positive ambassadors
  • Become a part of the positive movement
X
Before you go...

We have a favor to ask.

Our teams put in a lot of effort to create the content you love at The Better India.

In return, we would love it if you could help us spread the word about our new range of sustainable home cleaners: The Better Home