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AIMPLB, other Muslim groups reject law panel move on uniform civil code

The All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) and many other organisations associated with the Muslim community, have opposed the Law Commission's questionnaire exploring the possibility of a Uniform Civil Code (UCC). AIMPLB and other groups announced that they would boycott the whole exercise and accused the NDA government of threatening the pluralistic fabric of India.

AIMPLB general secretary Wali Rehmani, Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind president Maulana Arshad Madani and representatives of other bodies addressed a press conference where the announcement was made. The Board said the Centre's affidavit in the Supreme Court last week rejecting the validity of the triple talaq was an underhand means to impose a UCC in India.

The Board said there are "flaws" in the personal laws governing Muslims and they were being addressed from time-to-time.

"This is all destructive. The government should try to fix this and ensure peace than seeking views on issues like UCC," Madani said.

Rahmani said contrary to the Commission's claim, when implemented, the UCC will bring to an end country's pluralism and paint all in "one colour".

:People of different cultures stay in this country, if the UCC is implemented, attempts will be made to paint all in one colour, which is not in the interest of the country. Also, We don't want the practice of triple talaq to be abolished. There are more divorces in other communities. Rather the highest rate, which is double that of Muslims, is among Hindus," Rahmani stressed.

Both leaders said the Muslim organisations will launch a campaign to create awareness about this move by the government amongst Muslims from Thursday, beginning with a gathering in Lucknow.

"The government is trying to divert attention of people from its failure. We hope it withdraws the move. If it doesn't, we will decide on our future course of action. At present, we are trying to create awareness among Muslims in the country," Rahmani added.

"There is no need for any reform in the law. Triple talaq is not an issue and the government's move to impose UCC intends to snatch our religious freedom guaranteed in the Indian Constitution. That's the reason we are fighting for our rights," Aasma Zehra, a woman Board member, said.