Law Commission agrees UCC not practical in India, says Muslim body


By Abdul Bari Masoud,,

New Delhi: Rejecting Law Commission’s proposal for making common law based on “good practices” of different religions, the All India Muslim Personal Law Board on Tuesday claimed that the Law Commission admitted that Uniform Civil Code (UCC) cannot be implemented in a diverse country like India. A delegation of the Muslim Board, which submitted a detailed note to the Law Commission on child adoption, equal inheritance to women, and other issues, reiterated that it does not tolerate any interference in the Muslim Personal Law stating that unlike other personal laws, it is based on Quranic injunctions (rules) and the way shown by Prophet (PBUH).

A delegation of the board today called on Justice B.S. Chauhan (Retd), Chairman, Law Commission of India here at his office. Talking to reporters after the meeting, Board Vice President Maulana Syed Jalaluddin Umari, who led the delegation, said Justice Chauhan told the delegation that personal laws protection is guaranteed as per Constitution and this was “not the appropriate time for UCC in the country.”

“The law panel chief admitted that a uniform civil code is not a practical idea for India and that the government should not even think of implementing it for at least 10 years. We told him that not just 10 years, the idea should be dropped for good,” Maulana Umari said.

“Chairman told us that when a lot of civil and criminal laws don’t apply uniformly in India, then why speak about personal laws,” Maulana Umari said.

Dr S Q R Ilyas, a member of the delegation, said the Commission discussed as to what good things from the Muslim personal law can be made part of the Hindu civil code and vice versa.”We are clear that we cannot tweak our personal law at will. It is based on Quranic injunctions and the Hadith,” he said.

Another member Maulana Advocate Neyaz Ahmad Farooqui revealed that when the delegation requested the law panel that before making any law about Muslims, it should at least consult the community, they were shocked to hear the reply.”The Chairman said that the government was not even consulting the Law Commission on such matters, let alone others. This clearly shows that the Modi govt is more interested in doing politics on Muslim issues than actual reform,” Maulana Farooqi said.

The delegation has categorically told to the Commission that the Muslim Board does not agree with its proposition of reforming civil laws in the background of religious principles taken from different religion to which law Commission considers “good and appropriate.”

Kamal Farooqui, Board executive Committee member who was also part of the delegation said the board has submitted a detailed note on the issues including inheritance, adoption, custody of children, making a will, difference in interpretation of Islamic laws among various sects and model nikahnama.

In reply to a question, Farooqui said that nikah halala had nothing to do with Islamic Shariah.

“I can tell you with full authority that there is no concept of nikah halala in the Shariah. The debate around it is more a media creation,” he said.

Board secretary Maulana Fazul Raheem Mujaddidi pointed out the flaws in the controversial Triple Talaq bill which was passed by the Lok Sabha. He said the bill makes the Triple talaq as a cognizable offence while the Supreme Court had already declared it null and void. The proposed law is conspiracy to fill jails with Muslims and to create havoc in marital lives of Muslims, Maulana Mujaddidi said.

It is to mention here that it was the second meeting between the Law panel and the Muslim Board which had earlier met on May 21, this year and in that meeting certain issues related to Muslim Personal Law were orally discussed and deliberated upon. The Law Commission Chairman wanted to meet again on the pin pointed issues, which were later indicated by him with a request that a written note be submitted by the board, Maulana Umari said.

To Justice Chauhan’s proposition that there would be a step forward for making proposal to reform civil laws in the background of religious principles taken from different religion to which law Commission considers “good and appropriate”, the delegation told him that “the citizen of this country follows different religious, cultures, traditions and lives accordingly”.

It has also made clear to the commission that the determination of religious principles, traditions and cultures do not fall within the scope of functioning of the government and accordingly the said issues should not be made part of the law making process.

The delegation told the chairman that “Muslims believes and follows that there rules/ values are part of the religion which they cannot deviate in their personal relationships or social life while the way of life of other religious groups in India, their cultures and custom, are not based upon their religious text.”

Maulana Wali Rahmani, general secretary of the personal law board, also gave a letter to the Justice Chauhan stating that any intervention in “divine law will not be tolerated”.

Besides Maulana Umari, the delegation was comprised of Maulana Asghar Ali Imam Mehdi Salafi, (Member working Committee, AIMPLB) and Ameer Markazi Jamiat Ahle Hadith, Maulana Mufti Mohd. Mukarram Ahmed, Imam Shahi Masjid Fatahpur, Delhi, Ml. Mohd. Yaqoob Khan Qadri (Member, AIMPLB), Ml. Mohd. Mohsin Ali Taqvi (Imam, Shia Jama Masjid, Kashmiri Gate, Fatahpuri), Advocate Shakil Ahmed syed (Member AIMPLB), Advocate Mr. M.R Shamshad (Member AIMPLB), Dr. Vaquar Uddin Latifi (Office Secretary AMPLB).


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