Triple talaq petitioner Ishrat Jahan has another battle to fight
It's been two weeks since the SC banned the controversial Islamic practice of triple talaq. It looked like the landmark judgement would change the lives of millions. But for Ishrat Jahan, one of the flagbearers of the fight, life has actually gotten worse. Earlier, it was her husband and in-laws who were not supporting her; now it's almost the entire society.
The story of Ishrat Jahan
Ishrat was one of the five petitioners who had challenged triple talaq. Her husband of 15 years uttered 'talaq talaq talaq' over the phone from Dubai after a fight, then remarried and took away their kids. Her in-laws started mistreating her; she was abused and molested. They stopped giving her money. For years, she was supported by her relatives.
The difficult battle and the ultimate victory
Then she and the others, all victims of the now-illegal practice, joined hands to fight it in the apex court. They defied the Muslim Law Board, stood against the community and finally won the case. "This verdict will help thousands of women. Now Muslim women will be able to live with their head high," a delighted Ishrat said. She wasn't expecting the next battle.
From one hell to another
In the aftermath, her family and neighbors in Pilkhana, Howrah (WB), boycotted her and called her names. "It has opened floodgates of expletives, insulting remarks and comments targeted at my character assassination," she said. She has been called a 'gandi aurat' (dirty woman), an 'enemy of men', and 'wife of Hindus'. She even received threats; she had to seek security from the CM.
Her kids, her identity, everything was at stake
Ishrat almost lost her two children, who "went missing" sometime after the verdict. It later emerged her former husband had taken them without telling her. They were returned after police intervention. She even had to drop her customary niqab; once someone impersonated her and gave an interview to the media. To prevent something like that from happening again, she had to remove her veil.
Ishrat's lawyer, a Muslim woman, wasn't spared either
It's not just Ishrat; her lawyer Nazia Elahi Khan said she too is being trolled. "Some people say I work for the RSS. Some say no Muslim man will marry me…," she said. Nazia claims none of the other petitioners are facing anything like this.
The future looks bleak for the one who helped millions
"The only good thing that has happened (since the judgement) is that the electricity connection, which was cut, has been restored," Ishrat says. On September 4, three social groups met WB Governor Keshri Nath Tripathi to request security for the woman; requests to the CM haven't borne fruit yet. She helped save millions, but now Ishrat has to help herself.Share this timeline