UNIFORM CIVIL CODE
Common Civil Code=C.C.C. communal caste controversy or Uniform Civil Code =U.C.C. Unnecessary communal clash. Are these only formula left out for national integration? Are we morally, intellectually so bankrupt that we have no other formula for national integration? Are we forced to think in the communal ways? Are we made to think according to corrupted and polluted brains? Did we fight for independence on such divide and rule policy. Have we reached to such stage that we have lost our own independent discretion and think on those lines of communal propaganda. Can we not see the motive of such opinion makers? It is a matter of no debate that such controversy is raised for political gains. Let us analysis article 44 of the Constitution in its context and the logistic, for Common Civil Code or Uniform Civil Code.
Article 44 is in Part IV of the Constitution of Indian followed by part III of
fundamental rights. The whole part IV runs from Article 37 to Article 50 of the
Constitution. Are we suppose to implement only 44 and set aside all of the
directive principles. If yes why so and if not why not.
Article 37 states that directive principles in part IV shall not be enforceable by any court. Article 38 provides that the State shall secure social order for the promotion of the welfare of the people and shall minimize inequality in income and to eliminate inequalities in status, facilities and opportunities. Article 39 provides that the Government shall formulate such policy for securing equal right to all the citizens to have an adequate means of livelihood, distribute material resources to subserve the common good, does not result in concentration of wealth. Equal pay for equal work, the children are not abused, health and strengths of workers should be looked after in a manner so as to suit their age and strength and children should be given opportunity and the children and the youth are not exploited. Article 39 A provides equal justice and free legal aid. Article 41 provides for right to work, to education and public assistance in unemployment, old age, sickness and disablement etc. Article 42 provides for provisions for just and humane condition. Article 43 provides for living wage and for decent standard life and not animalsí life as described by the Honíble Supreme Court while dealing with Article 21 of the Constitution. Article 43 A provides for participation of workers in management of Industries. Article 44 provides that the State shall endeavour to secure for the citizens a uniform civil code throughout the territory of India. Article 45 provides for free and compulsory education for children. Article 46 provides educational and economic interest of schedule cast, schedule tribes and other weaker sections. Article 47 provides the duty of the state to raise the level of nutrition, standard of living and improve public health. Articles 48 & 48A provide for agricultural, animal husbandry and for protection of environment forest and wild life. Article 49 provides for protection of monuments, places and objects of national importance. Article 50 provides for separation of judiciary from executive. Article 51 provides for promotion of international peace and security.
Let us now analysis that what State has done during the last 57 years of its governance; whether a trust is created amongst the mind of common citizen of this country by following this directive principle in the governance of the country and whether it has failed in its duty. The success of democracy shall be achieved only when every citizen of this country feels that he is the part of the country sharing equal opportunity in terms of his basic needs of food, clothing, shelter and security. The issue is whether during its governance the State has followed these directive principles and created an atmosphere of trust so as make laws touching the very personal affairs amongst the members of community.
Let us now examine the practical life and facts without being hypocrite.
Do we find uniform language length and breadth of the country? Children of all political parties and all I.F.S., I.A.S. I.P.S. I.R.S. officers are in convent/English medium schools. These worthy fathers sent their wards to foreign country either to educate them in a total westernized culture and atmosphere or to settle them outside India in the alien culture or the least they do is to make them N.R.I. to receive double benefits. This elite officials and public men themselves do not have trust and faith in Indian education and Indian culture. After their return to India they feel class by themselves and look down upon the common Indian citizens and would not hesitate to tell the poor fellow (you bloody Indian). Is this uniformity? Is this national integration?
Do we find uniform distribution/sharing of water, electricity? There is dispute between Karnataka & Tamil Naidu over Cauvery River. There is a dispute between Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan, over sharing of water. Do we find supply of water uniform through out the country? There are 30 main rivers in the country and we do not find any policy being adopted for such equal distribution of water and electricity.
Do we find national uniform wage policy through out the country? Are we one nation or nation within nation? We feel alien if we travel from our one state to another. There is phenomenal disparity in wages. People of metro cities are buying residence and cars worth crores of Rupees, while when travel only 50 kms away to any village from metros you will find people eating boiled roots in their meals. They have no permanent roof over their head. Every year during monsoon they have to make new roof.
Do we find equal opportunity for jobs through out the country? We have divided them on the basis of language, caste and creed. Are we giving education in uniform language to have this equal opportunity? Now the efforts are to introduce local language in judiciary. Thus if one Indian from south is arrested in East, West or North then he would not be able to understand as to why he is arrested and when produced in court he does not know that local language. Thus even the justice is denied to him.
Do we find proper, forget equal, representation to all communities in jobs, licenses, permits, allotments, sharing and receiving benefits equally with the citizens of this country?
Do we find that women and children get their due dignity and protection from the State? The womb of woman is cut open & thrown & burnt. The womenís modesty is outraged and they are gang raped in communal riots during last 57 years. Do we call this protection of women? If the state has failed to implement articles 37 to 50 (except 44), how do we justify and come to the conclusion that the State has achieved all the objectives in the directive principles and has created atmosphere that every citizens, specially people from the minority community, feels secure in the hands of the State and whether they can trust in implementing Article 44 to frame Uniform Civil Code or Common Civil Code. Today the minority community has lost trust in State and by its various faulty policies or shall we say deliberate policies & its implementation. How does one explain the experiment of Gujarat laboratory and demolition of Babri Mosque, which has hurt the feelings of more than 150 crores Muslims all over the world? It has created an anti establishment feelings amongst its younger generation. Let there be a white paper prepared to find out the causes of such anti establishment feelings.
Having analysed, in brief, these directive principles in articles 37 to 50, let
us now examine the religious beliefs and faith of various minority communities
in India. Broadly it can be divided into 4 major minorities Muslims, Christian,
Sikh & Parsi.
The Muslim faith is that their law is divine in nature and no one has any authority to change it. All this is revealed to followers of Islamic in their Holy book in Quran. The constitution has given fundamental right under Article 25 to every citizen a right to freedom of religion. Every citizen of this country is equally entitled to freedom of conscience and the right freely to profess, practice and propagate religion. The explanation 1 to Article 25 is specifically lays down that the wearing and carrying of Kirpans shall be deemed to be included in the profession of Sikh religion. Article 26 provides the freedom to manage religious affairs. Article 29 provides protection of cultural and educational rights of minorities. The performance of Nikah, the procedure of divorce, the encouragement of marriages with widows & divorcees, the purpose, necessity and the obligations of second marriage is all guided in the Holy Quran. The Rule against perpetuity, now incorporated in Sec 113 of Transfer of Property Act was known and recognised in Islam as it was laid down in Holy Quran. The shares of Quranic heirs, the testamentary disposition and the shares of women is all laid down in Quran. Where is the room left for any true knowledgeable Muslims to accept any kind of interference, leave alone changes in Islamic principles. It is said, accepted, followed that Islam is way life and entire code of conduct is made for followers of Islam & the Holy Quran lays down that conduct for all followers of Islam, be they from one region, nation or the universe, and for all times. Similarly, Christians are bound to follow Bible, Sikhs have to follow Granth Saheb, Parsies have their own Holy book Zend Avasta and they believe in good deeds, good thought and good words. Before partition govt. appointed Rau Committee to look into Hindu Code bill. The findings of Rau Committee were not looked into after partition. After partition before Hindu Code bill or any of the enactment was legislated, the Special Marriage Act 1954 was enacted whereunder those married were governed by Indian Succession Act for their inheritance rights. People who propagated this theory did not opt for such code. They continued to formulate Hindu Code bill. Eventually in 1955 Hindu Marriage Act 1955 was exacted. Even in Hindu religion there is no prohibition of Polygamy. It is only Hindu Marriage Act i.e. Govt. of India Act, which prohibits Bigamy. In Hindu law there was prohibition to adopt a son whose mother could not marry adoptive father, which was done away with the Hindu Adoption Act, 1956. The Hindu Succession Act was enacted in 1956. Similarly, Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act enacted in 1956. Instead of following this Civil marriages and inheritance as Uniform Civil Code, in the year 1976 Special Marriage Act was amended and Section 21A was added whereunder the Hindus, inspite of marrying under Special Marriage Act, would be governed by Hindu Succession Act. By enacting Succession Act the Hindu women were given right to inherit properties. If we analysis the present atmosphere the Hindu divorcees after divorce come back to their maternal home. This is akin to Islamic Law. If we consider the religious fact even the Sita did not come back to join Raja Dashrat but she went to forest. Various laws formulated for Hindus very cleverly preserved their cultures and customs. Thus over the period of time the government instead of following the policies of directive principles put those enactments in the reverse gear and preserved the separate identity for Hindus. It is propagated by the proponents of Uniform Civil Code that Muslims follow criminal administration of justice then why not laws on the personal laws. The basic jurisprudence is that the State is authorised and interested in administration of Criminal Justice systems as the entire society is affected. However, in case of marriage divorce succession does not affects the society but itís the community a class by itself, which has to follow the dictates of Quran.
The life is replete with such instance but suffice is to say we need harmony not
uniformity. India had and always has a composite variety of cultures. We fought
together for Independence. God himself has created various species of human
being and there is no uniformity and in fact cloning is being protested. Law
should be educative and not oppressive. If any such laws are made and enforced
by force the same would result in revolt, confusion and unruly attitude. In any
event article 44 is not mandatory and the impatience shown by the proponents of
Uniform Civil Code is totally misplaced and ill conceived and the minority
community seriously apprehend the hidden agenda of the privaar. Uniform Civil
Code is not a solution. It is very unfortunate that the proponent of Uniform
Civil Code do so without reference to our constitution and laws governing the
two large communities i.e. Hindus and Muslims. In fact, the experience during 57
years has shown that the government has failed to implement the fundament rights
and failed to protect and give secured and dignified life to the People of
India. Uniform Civil Code is therefore a mirage.