Historic Move: Uttarakhand on the Brink of Implementing Uniform Civil Code

In a groundbreaking development, Uttarakhand, under BJP rule, is poised to become the first state in independent India to adopt the Uniform Civil Code (UCC). The UCC Bill is set to be presented in the state assembly, sparking anticipation and debate among citizens and political circles.

Historic Move: Uttarakhand on the Brink of Implementing Uniform Civil Code

Background: On Sunday, the Uttarakhand Cabinet granted approval to the final draft of the Uniform Civil Code, a comprehensive document spanning 740 pages in four volumes. This milestone clears the path for the UCC’s presentation during a special four-day session in the state assembly that commenced on Monday.

Chief Minister’s Assurance: Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami, emphasizing the UCC’s positive impact, assured citizens that the code would be “for the good of all sections.” He called upon members of other parties to engage in constructive debate during the upcoming session.

Security Measures: Security around the assembly premises has been significantly heightened for the special session, extending until February 8. Senior Superintendent of Police, Ajai Singh, reported the deployment of over 200 constables and 100 inspectors, along with mobile patrol parties at sensitive locations.

BJP’s Commitment: The BJP’s resounding victory in Uttarakhand’s 2022 elections has been attributed to its pre-poll promise of implementing the UCC. Chief Minister Dhami, now in his second consecutive term, has prioritized fulfilling this commitment.

Drafting Process: A committee formed in May 2022, comprising retired Supreme Court judge Ranjana Prakash Desai and others, took nearly two years and four extensions to prepare the UCC’s final draft. The committee received a remarkable 2.33 lakh written suggestions online and conducted over 70 meetings, engaging with around 60,000 people.

Opposition Protest: However, the road to implementing the UCC is not without hurdles. Opposition Congress MLAs staged a walkout during the Business Advisory Committee meeting, protesting the waiver of the Question Hour during the special assembly session. The Congress members challenged the constitutionality of this decision on technical grounds.

In response to the protest, Speaker Ritu Khanduri acknowledged the significance of the UCC but defended the decision, stating that sometimes matters are so crucial that they take precedence over routine procedures.

What Changes with UCC: The implementation of the UCC in Uttarakhand aims to provide a legal framework for uniform marriage, divorce, land, property, and inheritance laws for citizens of all faiths in the state. Chief Minister Dhami expressed hope that other states would follow Uttarakhand’s example.

As the special session unfolds, it remains to be seen how the debate on the UCC will shape the legislative landscape in Uttarakhand and potentially set a precedent for other states in India. Stay tuned for updates on this historic development

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