On Tuesday, Uttarakhand Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami submitted the Uniform Civil Code Bill in a special session of the state assembly. The assembly has been adjourned, and it will reconvene at 2pm to debate the contentious issue.
This session of the Uttarakhand Assembly has been called specifically to pass the Uniform Civil Code. Uttarakhand has been the first state to propose UCC.
Before the session began, Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami stated that the Uniform Civil Code (UCC) will be “for the good of all sections” and that there is no reason to be concerned, urging members of other parties to debate the issue constructively in the House. “Not only Uttarakhand, but the entire country, was waiting for the UCC. The wait will end on Tuesday, when it is introduced in the state legislature. “The whole country will be watching how the bill is introduced and passed in the House,” Dhami remarked.
On Sunday, the state cabinet approved the UCC draft during a meeting headed by Dhami. A special committee convened in May 2022 to prepare the UCC draft. Justice Ranjana Prakash Desai led the group that prepared the UCC draft, which also included Justice Permod Kohli (retd), social activist Manu Gaur, former chief secretary Shatrughan Singh, and VC Doon University Surekha Dangwal.
The document purportedly targets gender equality and includes measures for women’s equal rights to inherit ancestral properties, equal rights to adopt and divorce, and a prohibition on polygamy regardless of faith.
The panel has also advocated for a uniform marriageable age for girls of all religions, as well as the implementation of equal divorce grounds and procedures across all religions. It also involves registration for live-in partnerships.
According to sources, the panel has also considered Islamic rituals such as halala, iddat, and certain forms of triple talaq. There is also a provision for equal rights in adoption under the rules outlined in the Juvenile Justice Act. However, tribals have been excluded from its purview.