'Big step': Dhankhar lauds SC order on maintenance for Muslim women

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Vice-President Jagdeep Dhankhar addressed the students and faculty members of School of Open Learning, Delhi University, on the occasion of its 62nd Foundation Day

Vice-President Jagdeep Dhankhar (File image)

New Delhi: Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar on Thursday hailed the landmark Supreme Court judgment on maintenance for Muslim women describing it as a "big step" and asserting that assistance has to be equitable irrespective of religion.

The top court had on Wednesday ruled that a Muslim woman can seek maintenance from her husband under Section 125 of the CrPC and said the "religion neutral" provision is applicable to all married women irrespective of their religion.

In an apparent reference to the verdict, Dhankhar said "Only yesterday you must have seen a great Supreme Court judgment. It is being debated in public platform." "The assistance has to be equitable, uniform for all, irrespective of their religion. That's a big step," he said addressing representatives of an industry body.

The bench observed that if Muslim women are married and divorced under Muslim law, then Section 125 of the CrPC as well as the provisions of the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Divorce) Act, 1986 are applicable.

The option lies with the Muslim divorced women to seek remedy under either of the two laws or both laws.

"This is because the 1986 Act is not in derogation of Section 125 of the CrPC but in addition to the said provision," the bench said.