‘Muslims are governed by Shariat Law’: All India Muslim Personal Law Board opposes UCC bill tabled in Uttarakhand Assembly

In response to the introduction of the UCC bill, the AIMPLB has announced its intention to challenge the legislation through legal means.

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Courtesy: ANI

The introduction of a Uniform Civil Code (UCC) bill in the Uttarakhand Legislative Assembly on February 6th has sparked significant debate and controversy. The bill's primary objective is to establish uniform civil laws applicable to all residents, regardless of their religious affiliations. However, the All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) has vehemently opposed this initiative, citing concerns regarding religious autonomy and constitutional rights.

Opposition by the All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB)

Maulana Khalid Rashid Farangi Mahli, an executive member of AIMPLB, expressed strong reservations against the UCC bill. He emphasized the existing governance of Muslims in India under the 1937 Sharia Act, which provides a framework for various aspects of personal law. Unlike Hindus, who are governed by specific laws such as the Hindu Marriage Act and Hindu Succession Act, Muslims adhere to the principles outlined in the Sharia Act, granting them religious autonomy.

Farangi Mahli argued that the imposition of a uniform civil code would infringe upon the fundamental rights enshrined in the Constitution, particularly religious freedom. He questioned the notion of uniformity when it disregards the diverse religious practices and beliefs prevalent in Indian society. Moreover, he asserted that the AIMPLB would challenge the UCC bill in court, signaling a proactive stance in safeguarding the community's interests.

Arguments Against the UCC

The opposition to the UCC extends beyond legal considerations to encompass broader societal implications. Critics argue that a one-size-fits-all approach undermines the cultural and religious diversity of the country. By disregarding the unique customs and traditions of different communities, there is a risk of marginalization and alienation, especially among minority groups.

Furthermore, there are concerns about the potential for discrimination and exclusion under a uniform civil code. Farangi Mahli highlighted the importance of accommodating religious differences within the legal framework to uphold principles of equality and justice. He emphasized that any legislation must respect the plurality of Indian society and accommodate the religious practices of all citizens.

Legal Action by AIMPLB

In response to the introduction of the UCC bill, the AIMPLB has announced its intention to challenge the legislation through legal means. The organization's legal team will conduct a thorough analysis of the bill to identify any provisions that contradict Islamic law or infringe upon the rights of Muslims. This proactive approach underscores the commitment of the AIMPLB to protect the religious interests of the community and uphold the principles of justice and equity.

Response from Assam Chief Minister

The debate surrounding the UCC bill has transcended state boundaries, with Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma expressing interest in exploring its feasibility in Assam. While acknowledging the need for comprehensive civil reforms, Sarma emphasized the importance of careful deliberation and consultation with stakeholders before implementing such legislation. His cautious approach reflects the complexity of the issue and the need for nuanced solutions that address the concerns of all communities.

Opposition from Congress Leaders and SP Leader

The opposition to the UCC is not confined to religious organizations, with political leaders also voicing their concerns. Congress leaders, including Imran Pratapgarhi, have criticized the BJP-led governments for their push towards a uniform civil code. They view it as a divisive tactic aimed at homogenizing the country's diverse cultural landscape. Similarly, SP leader Syed Tufail Hasan reiterated the commitment of Muslims to adhere to Sharia law, emphasizing that any legislation incompatible with Islamic principles would be rejected outright.

Nonetheless, the debate surrounding the Uniform Civil Code reflects the complex interplay between legal, religious, and societal considerations. While proponents argue for uniformity and equality under the law, opponents raise valid concerns about the preservation of religious autonomy and cultural diversity. The stance taken by the AIMPLB, as well as political leaders from various parties, underscores the need for inclusive dialogue and deliberation to address the concerns of all stakeholders. Ultimately, any attempt to reform civil laws must strike a delicate balance between uniformity and diversity, ensuring the protection of fundamental rights and religious freedoms for all citizens.

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