The Uttarakhand government is gearing up to convene a special session of the state assembly to present the draft of the Uniform Civil Code (UCC), as per sources. The UCC draft, formulated earlier this year by a committee led by Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami, aims to establish common laws applicable to all citizens, irrespective of religion, in matters such as marriage, divorce, inheritance, and adoption.
- Draft Highlights:
- The draft bill proposes a comprehensive ban on polygamy.
- It includes a provision for live-in couples to register their relationship.
- Equal inheritance rights for both sons and daughters are envisaged in the proposed bill.
- Committee’s Background:
- The BJP, during its election campaign last year, promised to implement a UCC for Uttarakhand.
- Soon after assuming office for a second consecutive term, CM Pushkar Singh Dhami initiated the formation of a committee chaired by retired Supreme Court Judge Ranjana Prakash Desai to draft the UCC.
- The committee extensively engaged with citizens, holding consultations with over 2 lakh people and various stakeholders.
- Extension of Committee’s Tenure:
- The committee’s tenure has been extended multiple times, with the latest extension until December.
- The five-member committee initially received a six-month extension in November 2022 and a subsequent four-month extension in May 2023.
- Opinions were gathered from diverse groups, institutions, and tribal communities during the drafting process.
- BJP’s Electoral Promise:
- The introduction of a UCC for Uttarakhand was a significant electoral promise made by the BJP in the lead-up to the state assembly elections.
The proposed UCC, with its emphasis on gender equality, registration of live-in relationships, and a ban on polygamy, reflects the government’s commitment to modernize personal laws and foster inclusivity in Uttarakhand. The upcoming special session is expected to be a key step in bringing these reforms into legislative action.