Bharatiya Janata Party President JP Nadda on Sunday promised to bring in a Uniform Civil Code in Himachal Pradesh if the party is voted back to power in the state.
A Uniform Civil Code involves having a common set of laws governing marriage, divorce, succession and adoption for all Indians, instead of allowing different personal laws for people of different faiths.
The aim of such uniformity is meant to ensure equality and justice for women in particular, who are often denied their rights in marriage, divorce and inheritance under patriarchal personal laws.
Nadda promised the implementation of the Uniform Civil Code as he unveiled the party’s manifesto for the Himachal Pradesh Assembly elections, which are scheduled to take place on November 12.
“A committee of experts will be formed and on the basis of their report, Uniform Civil Code will be implemented in the state,” Nadda said.
The BJP has also promised implementation of the Uniform Civil Code in Gujarat as well. The Assembly polls in Gujarat will held be held in two phases on December 1 and December 5. Union minister Parshottam Rupala said that a committee will be constituted under a retired judge of the High Court to bring in the Uniform Civil Code.
Himachal Pradesh has joined Gujarat and Uttarakhand as the third BJP-ruled state to announce the formation of a committee to implement the Uniform Civil Code. Results for the 68-seat Himachal Pradesh Assembly elections will be announced on December 8.
Besides implementing the Uniform Civil Code, the BJP on Sunday also said that all Waqf properties in the state will be investigated under a judicial commission and their “illegal usages” will be stopped.
Under Islamic law and customs, properties that are donated for religious and welfare work come under the category of Waqf, which means a charitable, religious endowment. Once donated, it is treated as “God’s property”.
The party said it will spend Rs 12,000 crore over ten years to develop infrastructure and transportation around religious places and temples in the state. The BJP has also promised fund of Rs 900 crore as part of the Him Startup scheme, and creation of 8 lakh job opportunities in the state.
Nadda said that five new medical colleges will be built in Himachal Pradesh if the BJP is voted to power. “In a bid to further strengthen primary health, the number of mobile clinics will be doubled in every assembly constituency so that people in far-off areas can avail health benefits,” he added.
The BJP also said that the Goods and Services Tax will be limited to 12% for apple growers in the state.
Meanwhile, the Congress party on Saturday promised to provide 300 units of free electricity and allocate a Rs 10-crore start-up fund for each constituency in Himachal Pradesh if it wins the elections.
The Congress has also vowed to revive the old pensions scheme, provide employment to five lakh youngsters, give a monthly allowance of Rs 1,500 to women in the state, run mobile clinics and procure cow dung cakes at Rs 2 per kilogram.