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 It is totally outdated today.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

Whistle-blowing IPS officer Sanjiv Bhatt's wife suspects foul play after truck hits her car

By Nachiketa Desai*
Paranoia has seized Shweta Bhatt, wife of suspended Indian Police Service (IPS) officer Sanjiv Bhatt, after the car she was driving was rammed in broad day light. According to Shweta Bhatt, it was beacon light-flashing truck without registration number plate. The incident took place on January 7, just a day ahead of the Gujarat High Court was scheduled to take up the bail application of Sanjiv Bhatt, arrested last year for "involvement" in a 23-year-old case.

Call to support IIM-Bangalore professor, censured for seeking action against Uniliver

Counterview Desk
Sections of the Indian Institute of Managements (IIMs) across India have strongly reacted to the decision to censure Dr Deepak Malghan, a faulty at IIM-Bangalore. Prabhir Vishnu Poruthiyil, who is faculty at IIM-Tiruchirapalli, has sought wider solidarity with Dr Malghan, saying, "The administration has censured Deepak for merely suggesting a meaningful action against Hindustan Unilever for their abysmal environmental record" by “disinviting” it for campus placement.

Morari Bapu, who has installed new statues of Ram, Laxman, Hanuman without weapons

By Sandeep Pandey*
A saint is one who can give some inner peace by his/her voice. This will happen only when s(he) will talk about love and harmony. Morari Bapu is one saint who has been conveying the message of love, peace, harmony, fraternity, etc. Today when a number of saffron clad figures with aggressive posture, spewing venom, fanning hatred to polarise voters are at the forefront of politics of Hindutva it is a relief to see Morari Bapu in a different mould.

99% MGNREGA funds "exhausted", Govt of India makes no additional sanctions: Study

Counterview Desk
A letter, addressed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and prepared by senior activists led by Aruna Roy on behalf of the Peoples’ Action for Employment Guarantee (PAEG), and signed, among others, by 80 members of Parliament, has regretted that, despite repeated public statements by his government promising employment and job creation that will boost the country’s growth, the country’s only employment guarantee programme, Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA), “is being systematically undermined.”

Nuclear reactors sought from French giant "not safe": Letter to Modi on Jaitapur project

Counterview Desk
Amidst reports that the French nuclear giant EDF has submitted a “techno-commercial offer” for the world’s largest nuclear power park proposed in Maharashtra’s Jaitapur nuclear power park in Jaitapur on the Maharashtra coast, Dr EAS Sarma, India’s former Union Secretary in the Minister of Power, and an eminent voice in the civil society, has written an open letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who also heads Department of Atomic Energy (DAE),  protesting the move.

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.

Rejoinder: Worldwide anxiety post-Fukishima is fading, slowly and steadily

By Dr KS Parthasarathy* 
EAS Sarma, former Secretary, Government of India (GoI) in a letter addressed to the Secretary, Department of Atomic Energy (DAE), GoI, stated that, there has been "worldwide anxiety about the consequences of catastrophic nuclear accidents, either due to manual lapses or natural calamities" (Counterview, December 2, 2018). "In the recent years, globally, the pace of growth of nuclear power has escalated in leaps and bounds, causing a great deal of public concern and apprehension."

Kerala land being acquired using "draconian, anti-people" National Highway Act, 1956

Counterview Desk
In a letter Chief Minister of Kerala Pinarayi Vijayan, senior activists and politicians have insisted that the Kerala government should not agree to "inhuman displacement and buid-operate-transfer (BOT) Toll system", imposed by the Government of India and the National Highway Authority of India, for widening the current National Highway (NH) 66.

Kaiga NPP expansion: Karnataka to get just 400 MW, but lose thick forest, fresh water

Counterview Desk
In an open letter to the chairman and members of the Atomic energy Commission (AEC) on the issue of Kaiga nuclear power plant (NPP) expansion plan in Karnataka, Shankar Sharma, well-known power policy analyst, has argued that that in case of expansion, the site will face “exponential increase in radiation emission risks”, underlining, “Nuclear safety experts identify such a scenario as enhanced risk for NPPs with multiple reactors and shared technical facilities."
Sharma says the questions that also be asked whether Karnataka should lose more than 54 hectares of thick forests and about 152,304 cubic meters of fresh water per day from Kali river for a meager benefit of 400 MW from the Kaiga NPP, for which “there are many benign alternative options available for the state at much lower overall costs to the state.”
Text of the letter: This has reference to the public hearing under the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) Rule 2006 of Ministry of Environment, Fore…

Uttarakhand High Court: Biodiversity boards can impose fees on Ramdev's Divya Pharmacy

By Mridhu Tandon
In a significant decision, the Uttarakhand High Court on December 21, 2018 has dismissed the writ petition filed by Divya Pharmacy founded by Baba Ramdev and Acharya Balakrishnan, challenging the demand of the Uttarakhand Biodiversity Board (UBB) imposing fees under the provisions of the Fair and Equitable Benefit Sharing (FEBS).