Uttarakhand’s Uniform Civil Code (UCC) Bill

The Uttarakhand government is likely to table the Uniform Civil Code (UCC) bill in the upcoming assembly session from February 5-8. This key bill was part of the BJP’s election promises in 2022.

UCC Committee Finalizes Draft

  • The UCC drafting committee was formed in June 2022 and has held extensive public consultations. It claims to have received over 2 lakh written submissions and met 20,000 people.
  • The final draft focuses on issues like gender equality, uniform property rights and adoption rules. It is currently being printed before being tabled in the assembly.

Objective of UCC Bill

The bill aims to eliminate discrimination and arbitrariness in civil laws based on religion. It proposes to implement uniform regulations regarding marriage, divorce, inheritance, adoption etc.

What is Uniform Civil Code?

The concept of a Uniform Civil Code (UCC) aligns with the principle of one country, one rule applied equally to all religious communities. The Indian Constitution explicitly mentions the UCC in Article 44 under the Directive Principles of State Policy. This article states that “the State shall endeavor to secure a uniform civil code for the citizens throughout the territory of India.”

In essence, Article 44 directs the State to provide a uniform set of civil laws regarding marriage, divorce, inheritance, adoption etc. for all citizens, irrespective of their religion. Though leaders like Nehru and Ambedkar supported the UCC during the constitution drafting, strong opposition from religious hardliners and lack of public awareness at that time led it to be included under the non-enforceable Directive Principles instead of the fundamental rights. The framers hoped that over time, a uniform code would be implemented once social conditions were ripe.



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