My response to a certain blogger’s post on Uniform Civil Code

Posted on October 9, 2008

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I thought I would quickly make this post coz it seems this would be one long debate. On this blog, a post was made on the need of Uniform Civil Code. The post is not all that bad, but is quite superficial and pretentious. It claims to be well researched and everything but there are legal inaccuracy reflected there in.

I commented on the post but I suspect the blogger might delete/edit my comment so it is imp that I keep my records here. For one, I made a test comment saying, “This is a test comment to check if the comments here are moderated.” It turned out that they were not because the test comment went live immediately. But funnily just a min or two later I see that in place of my test comment there is a comment from the author saying, “Yes comments can be moderated here. See”

Duh!! That is not being ‘moderated’ that is editing / deleting already published comments which every blog owner can do. What was the big deal? Point?

Anyway here’s my response on the post. The comment thread is here in case they don’t edit/delete comments it might be interesting to see the debate.

An ideal unified civil code would allow a marriage between a Christian and a non-Christian from a legal perspective while leaving the decision whether to conduct it in a church or not should be left to the individuals and the church involved.”

It is surprising that even though inter religious marriages have been touched upon, and even when this is claimed to be a well researched post, the author did not / chose not / forgot to mention ‘The Special Marriage Act’ which has been there for almost as long as India been a free nation, 1954 to be precise and it allows performing and registering marriages between any two individuals irrespective of religion or caste. Absolutely any two.

Without getting into the debate of whether UCC is a communal matter or one of national interest, my humble point is – A lot of the concern over gender bias can be addressed if only people were educated about SMA instead of debating upon UCC which I think is a complete impossibility. It would remain an agenda for the political parties and would never go anywhere from there.

It is true a lot of property inheritance issues by the Muslims remain uncertain, since SMA doesn’t touch upon that area and Indian Succession Act doesn’t apply on Muslims. But UCC is not an answer to this concern. The Indian Legislators have the power to reform / scrap any law which is unconstitutional. Any personal law if and where unconstitutional can be nullified or amended. Nothing is stopping the State from doing it. The way Hindu Marriage laws were reformed and women were given better rights. And then Hindu succession act also has been reformed.

We don’t need UCC to bring such reforms. Seeking UCC amounts to an attempt to bring the entire gandhamadan mountain when only one leaf was asked for. And since we ain’t Hanumans we can’t get the mountain and the cure never reaches the place where it was required.

So much of human resources energy time is gone into debating a very futile matter this UCC. Bringing reforms within each existing personal laws would be a much simpler task than making one blanket law for the entire country.

UCC is like putting the entire earth back into sea and start churning all over again to get different results.

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Posted in: Law