The alarming rise of divorce nowadays

Md. Zillur Rahaman


Divorce among young couples has been increasing at an alarming rate in recent years in Bangladesh, which is gradually weakening family ties. According to a data published recently in a national daily, in 2022, a total of 13,288 applications for divorce were recorded in the two city corporations of Dhaka, out of this 7,698 in South City Corporation and 5,590 in North City. In Dhaka South, wives applied for 5,383, which is 70 percent of the total applications. The picture is the same in Dhaka North, where 65 percent of divorce applications in 2022 were women. As mentioned above, about 37 marriages break up in the capital every day, i.e 1 divorce occurs every 40 minutes. And the number of applications in January and February of this year is 2,488. On the other hand, the number of divorce applications in the capital was more than 12,000 in 2020 and 2021. According to the data of the mayor’s office of the two cities of Dhaka, 12,513 and 14,659 applications have been submitted in these two years respectively. 52,964 divorces took place in the last four years.

The fact that divorce has been increasing over the years can also be seen in the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS) data. The highest increase is among educated couples. According to BBS’s 2021 ‘Bangladesh Sample Vital Statistics’ report, the divorce rate has been on the rise for 15 years and the rate is highest in Rajshahi division, less in Sylhet. Majority of the married girls complain that they are victims of physical and mental abuse in the husband’s family and when their backs are pushed against the wall due to constant abuse, they have no other choice but to take the decision of divorce. Women are also applying for divorce more. Self-respecting women seek release from torture.
Analyzing data from Dhaka’s two city corporations and the district registrar’s office, it has been revealed that settlement after separation application is very low-just below 5 percent. Recently, the legal fight between a Bangladeshi father and a Japanese mother over two baby girls has sparked widespread discussion and criticism in the media. Moreover, celebrity divorces often make headlines and are often commented on in various ways. Many feel very comfortable discussing and criticizing the divorce of others. Some people made funny stories about them and others expressed condolences. However, the question remains as to who thinks about the reasons for ending their marriage. Although a legal or religious separation or divorce is valid or right but from social and religious point of view it is highly undesirable act.

An analysis of the reasons for divorce shows that there is a ‘lack of harmony’ between the husband and wife. Apart from this, there are various complaints such as family quarrels, physical and mental abuse, extramarital affairs, dowry, drug abuse, separation from expatriate husband, sexual disability, suspicion, indifference, personality conflict etc. In fact, the more educated we are, the less tolerance there is in society. Educated women want to take independent decisions, move freely and whenever there is a hindrance from husband or family, they take difficult decisions like divorce without thinking about the future. Stress of city life, individualism, partner’s likes and dislikes, unfulfilled biological needs etc are also affecting the marital relationship. Women are deciding to divorce without getting their own status in the family. Differences in cultural views of husband and wife are also becoming larger. Be it for real love or a family decision-marriage, however, requires careful selection of partners. Matching cultural perspectives is also very important.


In Islam, marriage is a special blessing of Allah Almighty and an important Sunnah of the Prophet (PBUH). It is an aid to the perfection of faith and is one of the elements of character building in young men and women. But at the same time divorce or talaq is recognized as the most disliked lawful act in Islam. When all efforts to reconcile in marriage fail, then, with the help of this system, the purpose of divorce is to save the independent and personal existence of both husband and wife and save their lives from evil destruction. That divorce is not a desirable act in Islam is proved from the clear declaration of Hadith. The Prophet (PBUH) said, “Allah has not permitted anything more hateful than divorce.” (Abu Dawud). There is a complete Surah called Talaq in the Holy Qur’an which deals with divorce.

In fact, children are the main victims of divorce. When a child grows up as children of broken family, it hinders the normal emotional growth of the baby and weakens family bonds. Such children suffer from an ‘identity crisis’. Psychiatrists believe that if children are deprived of the normal companionship and love of their parents, their lives become abnormal. They see society, family as negative.
Aversion to life develops in them which is terrible. They grow up in despair and depression who can pose a great danger to a state and society as well. A happy married life requires certain strategies and family ties are an important element in this. Love and suspicion are just two banks of the same river, which can never be reconciled. Divorce likewise weakens a family bond and throws life into an uncertain future and it is better to avoid the pain of divorce.

(The writer is a banker).