A distressing case shedding light on the vulnerable status of women within the context of Islamic practices has emerged in Haryana. The woman involved initially faced abandonment by her husband through the controversial method of instant triple talaq. Subsequently, she was coerced into a purported marriage, only to become a victim of sexual assault. The harrowing ordeal continued as she was subjected to rape by her brother-in-law, ostensibly under the guise of an Islamic custom known as ‘Halala’. Shockingly, when she confided in her mother-in-law about these traumatic experiences, she was met with rejection and told that such incidents were commonplace within the Islamic faith.
Originating from Saharanpur in Uttar Pradesh, the woman sought assistance from the police in her home state. However, her complaint was not accepted there, compelling her to approach the Yamuna Nagar police in Haryana. Only after narrating her plight to the authorities in Yamuna Nagar did the case gain attention. A zero FIR was initially filed at the Yamuna Nagar police station before being transferred to Saharanpur for further investigation. The incident underscores the urgent need for addressing the vulnerabilities faced by women in the context of certain religious practices.
In the complaint lodged at the Yamunanagar police station, the woman detailed that on August 10, 2022, her husband, a resident of Uttar Pradesh, had expelled her from their home by pronouncing triple talaq. Following her complaint, the police officially recorded the case on April 22, 2023, invoking charges under various sections, including 354 (Assault with intent to outrage the modesty of a woman), 406 (Criminal breach of trust), 498 (Enticing a married woman with criminal intent), and Sections 3 and 4 of the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Act of 2019.
Following the initial incident, on September 4, the woman’s in-laws proposed a settlement and compromise, suggesting that the case could be withdrawn. In return for her agreement, a month’s time was requested from the police. Assurances were given by the in-laws that the woman’s husband would come to pick her up and remarry her. On October 2, the husband arrived, expressing intentions to spend the night and leave the following morning.
During the night, he subjected her to sexual assault and disclosed plans to go to Saharanpur for another marriage. The next day, he departed, citing reasons, only to return late at night. Under the pretext of going for a morning walk, the accused resumed physical relations on October 4. He then accompanied her, dropped her near his residence in Saharanpur, and instructed her to return home, promising to join her later.
On the same night, the woman’s brother-in-law entered her room and raped her, contending that she could not reconcile with her husband without undergoing Halala. When the victim reported this to her mother-in-law, she dismissed the concerns, asserting that, according to their religion, she could not reunite with her husband without observing Halala.
In response to the woman’s complaint, the police registered a zero FIR, initiating the legal proceedings. About the arrests in this case no reports have come out.