The Supreme Court on Monday dismissed a public interest litigation (PIL) that challenged the decision of the Gujarat and Uttarakhand governments to set up a committee for introducing a Uniform Civil Code (UCC), saying the petition was devoid of merit and the Constitution empowers the states to form such committees, said reports. .
A bench led by Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud and also comprising Justice PS Narasimha said the plea filed by Anoop Baranwal and others does not warrant being entertained.
CJI Chandradhud observed that“They have constituted a committee under executive powers under Art 162. What’s wrong with it? Either you withdraw or we dismiss. The Constitution of a committee cannot itself be challenged as ultra vires.”
Article 162 of the Constitution states that the executive power of a state shall extend to the matters with respect to which the legislature of the state has the power to make laws.
The BJP-ruled states of Gujarat and Uttarakhand have formed committees to study aspects of implementing UCC in the respective states. A UCC involves having a common set of laws governing marriage, divorce, succession, inheritance, guardianship and adoption for all Indians, regardless of their religion, gender and sexual orientation.
In Gujarat, the Bhupendra Patel-led government decided to form a committee to implement UCC in the state ahead of the December elections. According to Union Minister Parshottam Rupala, the committee will be led by a retired high court judge and will consist of three to four members.
Despite the fact that several petitions challenging UCC are pending before the Supreme Court, The union government has maintained that UCC falls within the domain of legislature.
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