'Govt to start discussion on Uniform Civil Code'

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Dec 13, 2014 00:45 IST

The government said Friday it would initiate “at the earliest” consultations on implementation of the Uniform Civil Code, a long-held BJP poll promise.

“Certainly, this government wants more debate on this issue and we should come out with a... Uniform Civil Code across the country... it needs to be implemented, but after wider consultations with stakeholders,” law minister DV Sadananda Gowda told Rajya Sabha, in response to a query from Congress’ Rajeev Shukla.

“It is our duty to move forward as it is mandated by the makers of our Constitution,” he added.

The Code — also upheld by different Supreme Court judgments — covers marriage, divorce, inheritance, adoption and maintenance, and seeks to replace personal laws based on religious customs with a common set of laws for all citizens.

Uniform Civil...Gowda said the government was yet to come to a common opinion on various issues and would only move forward after getting absolute clarity.Referring to a form of uniform civil code in Goa accepted by all in the state, the minister said the aim was to have a code for the country that was agreed by all.

When Congress’ K Rehman Khan invoked article 25 of the Constitution — relating to freedom of conscience and free profession, practice and propagation of religion — to ask if the code was not in conflict with religious beliefs, Gowda answered, “For this only, I said this is a sensitive issue and we should work out the modalities so that the code is not in conflict with article 25.”

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