Centre feels Uniform Civil Code necessary for national integration

Centre feels Uniform Civil Code necessary for national integration

The Centre on Tuesday said a Uniform Civil Code was necessary for national integration but stressed on the need for holding wider consultations before taking a decision on the sensitve issue.

A day after the Supreme Court asked the Centre to clarify its stand on the need to bring in a common code, Law Minister D V Sadananda Gowda said he would consult the prime minister, his Cabinet colleagues and top law officers and various personal law boards before filing its affidavit in the court.

“Even the Preamble of our Constitution and Article 44 of the Constitution do say that there should be a Uniform Civil Code. For the interest of national integration, certainly a common civil code is necessary. But it is a very sensitive issue. It needs very wider consultation. Even communities, even across the party line, even various organisations...it need to have a wider consultation,” Gowda said.

“But the concept of the Preamble of the Constitution and Article 44 and today in the national interest, certainly a step further need to be taken in this direction,” he said.
The minister said he had made a similar statement in the Lok Sabha in April when the issue came up for discussion.       

He said the high courts of Kerala and Karnataka have already given their judgment when they were dealing with some marriage laws saying a common code is the “need of the country.”

The apex court had on Monday asked the NDA government to clarify if it was willing to bring the Uniform Civil Code in the country, saying there was “total confusion” due to personal laws governing religious practices.

The court asked the government to clarify its position within three weeks on the vexed issue on framing the Uniform Civil Code so that different standards enjoined in various religions could be regulated under the law.

Delhi-resident  Albert Anthony has filed the PIL contending that specification of two-year separation period in law for Christians and only one year for other communities was “wholly unjustified, discriminatory, arbitrary and unsustainable”.

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