Advait Shah, Jindal Global Law School
Introduction and Historical background
The uniform civil code that is currently governing the state of Goa is held in high regards by well-renounced people in the field of law. According to the chief justice of India, S.A. Bobde, Goa is a shining example of an Indian state with UCC. But the ground reality is different from what it is claimed. The experience of people being governed by it tells us that it is neither uniform nor progressive. An urgent need for UCC in family law was acknowledged in the pre-independence era, by the all India Women Congress who raised the issue of unequal treatment of women within various personal laws and demanded a reform through comprehensive code or reforms in the personal laws. But during the constitutional assembly debates, UCC was looked at from the point of view of national integration rather than gender justice.1 One of the arguments against UCC is that it is violative of one’s fundamental rights. One may want to be governed by their religious laws and hence many socialists, religious fundamentalists and political parties have also suggested retaining the personal laws as well. Another major argument and probably the most controversial one is by those who are aware of UCC in Goa and have argued that this code has improved the social status of women in Goa.2 There is no denying that there was the upliftment of women morals, but there persist various aspects where it lacks which we will discuss in this paper.