In the northeastern state of Assam, Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma has taken a firm stance on the issue of polygamy, with plans to introduce a bill aimed at banning the practice.
Addressing the presser Himanta Biswa Sarma said, "Assam cabinet has discussed both the bills- UCC and polygamy but we were following polygamy but Uttrakhand has passed UCC...we are now working on aligning both so that we can prepare a robust legislation but meanwhile, the cabinet has passed a very important legislation in the last cabinet prohibiting healing which is a very dicey subject used to covert tribal people as we believe religious status quo is important."
The proposed legislation is part of a broader initiative to implement a Uniform Civil Code (UCC) in the state.
Opposition parties have criticized the move, labelling it as communal and a diversion from more pressing issues such as health, education, and transportation, particularly in 'char' areas where some Muslims are believed to practice polygamy.
They argue that the focus should instead be on improving education, which they believe would naturally lead to the end of practices like polygamy.
Also Read: Assam Cabinet discusses introduction of UCC, decision pending
Despite the opposition's concerns, the Assam government has prepared its own draft bill, focusing solely on the aspect of polygamy.
Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma today said that the much talked about Polygamy Ban Act of the government is currently being vetted by the Law Department.
Speaking to the media, CM Sarma said that while the polygamy ban act is with the Law Department, the Assam government is closely monitoring the situation in Uttarakhand where the Uniform Civil Code (UCC) Bill is to be tabled in a special assembly session on February 5.
He said that if the UCC Bill is tabled in the Uttarakhand Assembly, then there is scope to table the entire UCC in Assam as well.
"We are lining up the Assam Polygamy Ban Act. It is with the Law Department now for vetting. But we will also closely monitor the development of Uttarakhand. If the Uttarakhand UCC Bill is laid on February 5, then we see that we are in a position to implement the entire UCC. We will see that also," said the Assam CM.
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