Skip to main content

Uniform civil code: Shariat was made 1400 years ago. Must society remain stagnant for 1400 years?

By Markandey Katju*
I am a strong supporter of a uniform civil code. All modern countries have a common law for all citizens, and India must modernize if it is to progress.
It is stupid to say that if sharia is abolished Islam will be abolished. It is also stupid to say that Sharia was made by God. Sharia grew out of the feudal, backward social customs in Saudi Arabia in the 7th and 8th centuries. It is totally outdated today.
The old ( non statutory ) Hindu Law was abolished in 1955 and 1956 by Parliamentary statutes, e.g. the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955, the Hindu Succession Act, 1956, etc despite the strong protest of orthodox Hindu swamis and saints ( e.g. Karpatriji, Prabhudatt Brahmachari, etc ) who said that this will abolish the Hindu religion as Hindu Law emanated from the Vedas. However, that never happened. Hindus are still going to temples, doing puja, and observing their rituals, etc.
So abolishing the oudated, feudal sharia will certainly not abolish Islam. Has abolition of the shariat criminal law e.g. abolition of the barbaric law of stoning women to death for adultery ( sangsad ) or cutting off the limbs for theft, put an end to Islam ? So even after abolishing shariat personal law, Muslims will keep going to masjids, saying namaz, etc.
In fact shariat personal law has kept Muslims backward, because oral talaq ( and burqa ) have kept many Muslims backward. Since women comprise of half of society, keeping women backward means plucking off one of the two eyes from one's face.
Shariat was made 1400 years ago. Must society remain stagnant for 1400 years? Must laws made in the 7th century be applied today though society has totally changed since then? After all, laws must reflect social conditions, and if social conditions have changed, so must the laws. In this age of cars and aeroplanes must one continue travelling on a camel?
Some Muslims say that sharia was made by Allah. but the same argument was made by orthodox Hindus, who said that the old ( non statutory ) Hindu law emanated from the divine Vedas and so was unchangeable, and orthodox Christians who said that the biblical injunctions regarding marriage etc were made by God. All this is nonsense and humbug.
Laws have to change as society changes. How long will stupidity be tolerated? How can you have oral talaq, which keeps a Damocles sword hanging over every married Muslim woman, in this age of equality between men and women? How can you support burqa, which is really keeping women in cages, in the modern age ? How can you say that if a woman is not wearing a burqa she is naked or in a bikini (as many idiotic supporters of burqa contend)? Is a woman wearing a sari or salwar kameez naked or in a bikini?
I know this post will draw a lot of flak on me by many bigoted idiots, but so be it. I am a sworn enemy of idiots.
---
*Former chairman, Press Council of India; former Judge, Supreme Court of India. Source: https://www.facebook.com/justicekatju/. 
Views expressed above are those of the author and not of www.counterview.net 

Comments

TRENDING

Missed call drive for VVPAT verification follows online plea to "pressure" poll panel

By Our Representative
Several political activists have begun a new campaign, asking concerned citizens to give a missed call on 9667655855 to “support the demand that 2019 Loksabha elections must be declared only after verification of 50% electronic voting machines (EVMs) with Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT) receipts.” The effort, supported by civil society networks across India, is meant to "further pressure" India's election machinery to ensure that the poll outcome becomes more transparent.

Did Modi own, buy digital camera costing Rs 7 lakh in 1987-88, also used email?

Counterview Desk
In an interview to the news channel News Nation, aired on Saturday last, Prime Minister Narendra Modi declaring that he had approved the air strike despite bad weather because he felt the clouds would hide Indian planes from Pakistani radar is known to have become a laughing stock across India.

When a neo-nationalist "invaded" hijab clad ladies, Bengali looking scholar in Delhi metro

By Aditi Kundu*
Travelling in Delhi metro on a daily basis to commute from Mayur Vihar to Dwarka, I see diverse people everyday. One can hear them talk about different aspects of life, from kitchen pilitics to national politics. On the morning of May 13, I witnessed a strange incident; disturbing and amusing at the same time.

Terror attacks: Difference in public reactions in India, those in Colombo, Christchurch

By Battini Rao*
Recently, on April 20 during Easter Sunday, more than 250 people were killed in a series of coordinated terrorist attacks in churches and hotels in Colombo, Sri Lanka. Local Islamic organisations Thawheed Jamath (NJT) and Jamathei Milathu Ibrahim (JMI) are held responsible for the attack. Islamic State has also claimed responsibility.

Women lost 88 lakh jobs in 2018: Why Modi "failed" to address their disempowerment?

Counterview Desk
Five human rights leaders Anjali Bhardwaj, Shabnam Hashmi, Purnima Gupta, Dipta Bhog, and Amrita Johri of the Women March for Change have posed 56 questions (alluding to Modi’s claim of 56 inches chest) to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP against the backdrop of his interview with a Bollywood star, which was allegedly masqueraded as a “non-political” conversation.

PepsiCo warned: Withdraw cases against Gujarat farmers or face dire consequences

By Our Representative
About 200 farmers’ leaders and activists, in a letter to Dr KV Prabhu, chairperson, Protection of Plant Varieties and Farmers’ Rights Authority (PPVFRA), and Dr R C Agrawal, registrar general, PPVFRA, Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare, Government of India, have demanded that PepsiCo immediately withdraw all the legal suits it has slapped on many potato farmers in different districts of Gujarat.

World Bank clarifies: Its 26th rank to India not for universal access to power but for ease of doing business

By Our Representative
In a major embarrassment to the Government of India, the World Bank has reportedly clarified that it has not ranked India 26th out of 130 countries for providing power to its population. The top international banker’s clarification comes following Union Power Minister Piyush Goyal’s claim that India has “improved to 26 position from 99” in access to electricity in just one year.

During Emergency, the ruler was extolled but Opposition wasn't punched around: Scribe

By Rajiv Shah
A just-released book, “India: The Wrong Transition”, by a top Delhi-based scribe Anand K Sahay, has quoted “journalistic circles” to say that the Indian mainstream media – with certain “honourable exceptions” – has virtually abandoned the “practice of journalism”, and  this happened following a “sting operation” that showed that “the crème de la crème of Indian journalism were only too willing, for a suitable price, to let poisonous Hindutva propaganda prevail in their news columns.”

Ex-IAS, IPS, IFS officers tell Modi: Pragya Thakur doesn't represent India's rich heritage

Counterview Desk
In an open statement, a group of former civil servants have said that normally they would have dismissed the candidature of Pragya Thakur, who is BJP’s choice for the Bhopal Lok Sabha constituency, as an act of political expediency. However, they were forced to react to her candidature after none other than Prime Minister Narendra Modi termed has as a “symbol of our civilisational heritage.”

Disproportionately high death sentences against Dalits, Adivasis, Muslims: UN told

Counterview Desk
In their joint submission to the United Nations Human Rights Committee to meet for the listing of adoption of list of issues at its 126th session, July 1-26, 2019, top Dalit rights organizations have taken strong exception to, among other things, "disproportional application of death sentencing by the judiciary of minorities, such as Muslims, Dalits and Adivasis".