IT has been widely reported in the press that the Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath plans to carry out a survey of Muslim women to ascertain their keenness to get rid of triple talaq. Muslim women and Muslim women's groups across the country have been campaigning for several years against the practice of triple talaq and have filed several cases in the courts including the Supreme Court against this practice. The CM's statement that he believes in gender equality is only targeted at Muslim women as he has remained significantly silent on the abysmal status of Hindu women in the state of UP today.
In a statement issued on April 24, AIDWA has said that UP has recorded a significant rise in crimes and killings in the name of "honour" in which young persons who dare to assert their right to choose their partner in a relationship are ruthlessly harassed and tortured. In fact the Hindu Yuva Vahini formed by Yogi Adityanath has barged into a home and brutally assaulted a young couple who were together. The latest NCRB data shows an extremely high incidence of domestic violence and sexual crimes against women – among the highest in the country.
UP's Land Reform Act denies women a right to their share in Agricultural land. This is despite the changes to the Hindu Succession Act in 2005 which removed the exemption given to land reform and land ceiling legislations to override its provisions giving women equal rights to inherited property. Hindu women as widows and as deserted/separated women continue to suffer because of a lack of law giving them an equal share in marital property and because of a lack of enforcement of their right to maintenance and financial support. They are not even equal guardians of their children.
AIDWA decries the attitude that only tries to show that Muslims are backward and only Muslim women are suffering whereas the truth is that Hindu and indeed Indian women are equally oppressed by domestic and other forms of violence and their lack of entitlement to property and other rights.