Skip to main content

Opposing Universal Civil Code, 114 Muslim community academics, writers, activists want triple talaq abolished

By Our Representative
As many as 114 academics, lawyers, journalists, writers, artists and poets from the Muslim community have come together to insist that that they are against “instant arbitrary triple talaq as practiced in India”, even as opposing the BJP rulers’ effort to link it with the “need” to adopt a universal civil code (UCC).
Strongly disapproving the “highly objectionable” affidavit filed in the Supreme Court by the All-India Muslim Personal Law Board regarding the triple talaq matter, they have said, “We believe that to suppress the progressive demands for equality, led by various Muslim women’s organizations, the most conservative sections of the Muslim community are creating a Shah Bano campaign-like situation.”
Saying that this is being done to keep Muslim women “subjugated and strengthen the patriarchal stronghold on the Muslim women”, the signatories of the statement say, the present NDA government and its earlier avatars have used UCC as a “stick to frighten and demonize the Muslim community and polarize opinion by projecting that the Muslims of this country are backward, anti-women and not open to any progressive laws.”
Signed among others by top historian Prof Irfan Habib, author and dramatist Shamsul Islam, social activist Irfan Engineer, scientist and film maker Gauhar Raza, journalist Jawed Naqvi, and academic Zoya Hasan, the statement says, UCC “has been always been projected by such regimes and right-wing politics as a Hindu v/s Muslim tool.”
“The fact of the matter is that many of the personal laws irrespective of which religion they belong to are archaic and anti-women”, the statement underlines.
Insisting on the need to “expose the nefarious designs of both the present regime as well as of the patriarchal conservative Muslims, who are colliding with the retrogressive forces to take the attention away from the most important issues, and the failures of the present government on all fronts”, the statement says, “no single organization or group of people/organisations can “claim to speak on behalf of the whole community”.
It adds, “Muslims and people of Muslim descent living in India follow different customs and celebrate a large number of festivals, some common to all and some different from each other, depending on the local cultural practices.”
Pointing out that they do not have “any faith in the sudden found ‘love for women’ and ‘gender justice’ as articulated by Venkaiah Naidu recently”, the statement says, “Since the new regime has come to power we have seen heavy budget cuts on schemes for women, we have heard horrendous statements about women which have gone unopposed by the members of the regime.”
The statement further says, “We have witnessed growing violence against women as well as dilution of gender just laws such as the Domestic Violence Act (section 498A)”, adding, “We do not believe that in a country with over 4500 communities and over 400 spoken languages uniformity or tweaking of present unequal laws can ensure equality for men and women.”
Underlining that social change is “a slow process for which conditions on the ground need to be created where people have basic needs of housing, employment, food and good education”, the statement says, “There is a need to first bring in progressive, gender just enabling laws which can be accessed by people from all religions.”
“We have a Special Marriage Act under which people from any community or across religious communities and castes can marry each other. People have a choice to opt for Special Marriage Act (which is also being diluted by various right-wing state governments by adding caveats to it)”, the statement says.
“Similarly”, the statement says, “the Juvenile Justice (JJ) Act has now provisions for people of any religion to adopt a child, whether their personal laws allow it or not. More such laws which give equal rights to women in property and matters of marriage, divorce, inheritance, custody of children etc. should be brought in.”

Comments

TRENDING

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.

Modi model? "Refusal" to build Narmada's micro canals, keep Kutch dry; help industry

By Medha Patkar*
This is the latest photograph of the Kutch Branch Canal (KBC) of the Sardar Sarovar, as of April 8! What does it show, expose, and what memories do you recall? Is it dry or dead? Is it a canal or a carcass of the same?

Indian talc products contain "contaminated" asbestos structures, can cause cancer: Study

Counterview Desk
A recent study, using polarizing light microscopy, transmission electron microscopy (TEM), electron diffraction, and X-ray analysis on multiple over-the-counter Indian talc products for the presence of asbestos, has concluded that large quantities of body talc products are likely to pose a public health risk for asbestos-related diseases, especially for the cancers related to asbestos exposure.

Why are you silent on discrimination against Dalit jawans? Macwan questions Modi

By Rajiv Shah
Close on the heels of releasing his book in Gujarati, "Bhed Bharat", which lists 319 cases of atrocities against Dalits and Adivasis across the country over the last five years, well-known Gujarat Dalit rights leader Martin Macwan has shot an open letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, telling him the reasons why he does not want vote for the BJP.

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.”

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.

Jharkhand Adivasi lynched to death by mob "chanting" Jai Shri Ram: Fact-finding team

Counterview Desk
On April 10, 2019, Prakash Lakda, a 50-year old Adivasi of Jurmu village of Gumla’s Dumri block, was lynched to death by a mob of men from the Sahu community of neighbouring Jairagi village. Three other victims from Jurmu – Peter Kerketta, Belarius Minj and Janerius Minj – sustained severe injuries due to the beating by the mob. A fact-finding team of Jharkhand Janadhikar Mahasabha (JJM), comprising of several activists and representatives of member organisations, conducted a fact-finding inquiry into the incident on April 14-15.

Bill Gates "promoting" GMO, Bt cotton, like cartels that have roots in Hitler's Germany

By Our Representative
World-renowned environmental leader and ecologist Dr Vandana Shiva has expressed concern that Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft Corporation, has joined the bandwagon of “a poison cartel of three" – Monsanto and Bayer, Syngenta and ChemChina, Dow and DuPont – all of whom allegedly have “roots in Hitler’s Germany and finding chemicals to kill people”.

Investigation shows Narmada downstream "seriously" polluted. Reason: apathy, greed

By Rohit Prajapati, Krishnakant, Swati Desai*
Our investigation regarding quality of water flowing in the Narmada river downstream of the Sardar Sarovar Dam (SSD), dated April 6, 2019, between 11.00 a.m. to 4.00 p.m. reiterates, what is commonly known now, that the Sardar Sarovar Project (SSP) is planned without considering its impact on the downstream Narmada River stretch of 161 kilometres, its ecology, biodiversity and fishery, and lakhs of people living close to and dependent on the river directly or indirectly. This, in turn, has led to its present disastrous state.

Emergence of a rare Dalit teacher in IIT-Kanpur "disturbed" certain faculty members

By PS Krishnan, IAS (Retd)*
Dr Subrahmanyam Sadrela, a faculty member in the Department of Aerospace Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology (IIT)-Kanpur since January 1, 2018, and one of the rare Dalit members of the faculty in IIT group of institutions, is facing the threat of revocation of his PhD thesis, and thereby also jeopardizing his job and career.