Tribune News Service
New Delhi, January 29
The Supreme Court on Friday issued notice to the Government on a petition seeking uniform laws of adoption and guardianship for all citizens, irrespective of religion and gender.
A Bench headed by Chief Justice of India SA Bobde asked the government to respond to Delhi BJP leader Ashwani Kumar Upadhyay’s petition after senior advocates Anjana Prakash and Geeta Luthra pointed out that the current system was discriminatory.
Last month, it had asked the Centre to respond to two other petitions filed by Upadhyay seeking removal of anomalies in grounds of maintenance, alimony and divorce.
The issue is likely to trigger a fresh debate on uniform civil code that has been one of the core demands of BJP for decades.
The petitions filed last month by Upadhyay, an advocate, had said grounds of maintenance, alimony and divorce should be uniform for all citizens without discrimination on the basis of religion, race, cast, sex or place of birth.
Upadhyay had sought a direction to the Government to take apposite steps to remove anomalies in the grounds of divorce and make them uniform for all citizens without prejudice on the basis of religion, race, cast, sex or place of birth.
It should be done in spirit of the Articles 14, 15, 21, 44 (right to equality, right to non-discrimination, right to live with human dignity and directive principles of state policy which obliged the State to enact a uniform civil code as also international conventions, he submitted.
Alternatively, he had demanded that being custodian of the Constitution and protector of fundamental rights, the top court should declare that the discriminatory grounds of divorce violated citizens’ right to equality, right to non-discrimination and right to live with human dignity and go on to frame guidelines for ‘Uniform Grounds of Divorce’ for all citizens.
Upadhyay urged the top court to direct the Union Home Ministry and Union Law Ministry to take appropriate steps to remove the prevailing anomalies in the grounds of maintenance and alimony to make them uniform for all citizens without any discrimination based on religion, race, caste, sex or place of birth in spirit of the Articles 14, 15, 21, 44 and International Conventions.