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No uniform civil code please: Muslim women’s group

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New Delhi: A Muslim women’s group on Tuesday opposed attempts to impose a uniform civil code but said “a gender just reform” was needed in the Muslim personal law.

Any move to introduce a uniform civil code without taking into account the constitutional guarantee of freedom of religion would be wrong, the Bharatiya Muslim Mahila Andolan said.

“Article 25 the constitution gives the right to all, including minorities, to have personal laws based on respective tenets of different religious communities,” the group said in a statement.

“Under this provision, we demand a gender just reform in the Muslim personal law based on the Quranic values of equality and justice, in line with article 25 of the constitution.”

The group pointed out that the Supreme Court observation on the need to bring about a gender just legal framework was not aimed at imposing anything on different communities.

“As per the BJP manifesto, the NDA government wants to impose a family law on all communities with the intention of national integration,” it said.

“It is important to point out that national integration cannot happen by a common family law but by treating all citizens equally.

“There can be no imposition of any kind as this would impinge on the religious freedom and secularism principles enshrined in the constitution. Nor would different socio-religious communities accept this.

“Like all religious majority and minority community in India, Muslims must also have a codified Muslim personal law based on its religious text.

“Just as there is a Hindu Marriage Act for Hindus, just as there is a Indian Christian Marriage Act for Christians, just as there is a Parsi Marriage and Divorce (Amendment) Act for the Parsis, Muslims too should have an amended Shariat Application Act to ensure a law for the Muslim community which is in consonance with the Islamic and constitutional values of justice and equality.”

The group said the recent targeted violence on minorites “have led to an atmosphere of insecurity and deep sense of fear within the Muslim community and amongst all minorities.

“Any talk of a uniform civil code is only adding to the strongly felt sense of hurt and alienation.

“This atmosphere of intimidation does not help the cause of women’s demand for justice at all.

“It appears that for the fringe right-wing groups, uniform civil code is another stick to beat the community with,” the group said.

(IANS)

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Kerala Government Decides to Revise The List of Women Who Prayed at Sabarimala

The list of 51 women is not part of an affidavit but only referred to by the state government counsel in his arguments. Soon the list was highlighted in the media

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Image Source: Wikipedia Commons

Stung by widespread criticism over the numerous errors in the list of women who prayed at the Sabrimala temple, the Kerala government has decided to re-prepare the list.

A counsel of state government had presented the list in the Supreme Court on Friday, which reportedly had discrepancies in the age and names of women. The list was taken from the records of the online system, through which pilgrims register for having “darshan”.

The row erupted over flaws in the actual age of some of the 51 women, whom the counsel had referred to in the list as “banned” — on account of they being of menstruating age group of 10 to 50 years — who prayed at the temple this season.

State police chief Loknath Behera on Saturday asked senior officials to revise the list, which included even the name of men, besides several of the women above 50.

State Devasom (temples) Minister Kadakampally Surendran told the media that his department has no role in the preparation of the list, while the president of the Travancore Devasom Board – custodian of the temple, A. Padmakumar said they are not responsible for this as they do not prepare statistics of the pilgrims in the temple.

Kanam Rajendran, state secretary of the Communist Party of India – the second biggest ally of the ruling Pinarayi Vijayan government, said the entire responsibility of what has happened lies with the state government.

Sabarimala
Kerala to revise list of women who prayed at Sabarimala.

But the Industries Minister E.P. Jayarajan, the closest aide of Vijayan, defended him by saying that it is not just 51 women, but so many women have had “darshan” at the temple.

Kanaka Durga and Bindu Ammini, both in the “banned” age group of 10 to 50 years, prayed at the Sabarimala temple.

It was after they approached the apex court seeking security for having safe “darshan” that a bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, Justice L. Nageswara Rao and Justice Dinesh Maheshwari directed the state government to arrange adequate protection for them.

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The list of 51 women is not part of an affidavit but only referred to by the state government counsel in his arguments. Soon the list was highlighted in the media.

“This goof-up reveals the abject failure of the way Vijayan is running the state,” said state BJP president P.S. Sreedharan Pillai.  (IANS)