Is India ready for a uniform civil code?

Is India ready for a uniform civil code? by Tejasvita Apte

Answer by Tejasvita Apte:

Avijit Anand, thank you for the A2A.

First Let us address the common myths –

1. Uniform civil code means imposition of Hindu law.

This is absolutely incorrect. Uniform civil code only means uniformity in personal laws. It will be a neutral law which will have nothing to do with religion.

2. Uniform civil code will take away your freedom of religion.

No, it will not. Freedom of religion granted as a Fundamental right will remain so under the Constitution.

3. We don't really need the Uniform Civil code, India is working just fine.

By that logic we don't need any laws for that matter. We absolutely didn't require codification of Hindu law. But the act helped the community in the long run. Made its implementation easy.

India should implement Uniform civil code for the following reasons –

a) To be 'Secular'

In order to be completely secular, laws should have nothing to do with religion. All we have right now, is different factions of the population practising different laws. The true implementation of India's secularism would be made by enacting personal laws outside the purview of religion. All Indians will truly be treated equally regardless of our religions.

b) To reduce the burden on the legal system.

Different personal laws for different communities creates unnecessary burden on the legal system. Bringing a Uniform Civil code would reduce that. It would also help in simplifying a lot of technicalities which are present in different personal laws. It will also address all the loopholes present in different personal laws.

c) It will promote unity

Single personal law for all Indians would promote unity. It will also help in the progress of India as a nation.

d) Better laws will be enacted

A lot of different personal laws which are grossly unjust, unfair, discriminatory and downright unconstitutional are given protection under religious freedom. Most of these laws do not help people. Uniform Civil code will bring about better laws and will promote a better legal system.

e) It will help better the situation of Muslim women.

Monogamy should be mandated on all the Indians. This will happen through Uniform Civil code. Uniform Civil code is also a major step towards gender justice.
Muslim women have hardly got any rights  as to maintenance or inheritance. Providing a strong Uniform civil code will help better the situation of Muslim women which will in turn help the community's progress. The progress of women is most important if any community wishes to rise above poverty and progress.
Also certain provisions of Christian law and Hindu law needs amendment. That too will happen with Uniform civil code.

f) It will help end vote bank politics

If all Indians have same laws governing them, then the politicians will have nothing to offer to any community in exchange of their votes.

The Supreme Court has time and again reiterated the importance of enacting a Uniform Civil Code. The Directive Principles of state policy under the Constitution of India also state that the State shall pass a Uniform Civil Code.
Every modern nation which has truly embraced 'Secularism' has a Uniform Civil Code.

It is time we have it too.

Is India ready for a uniform civil code?

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