Muslim groups in Kerala for political, legal fight against UCC, not street protests

Leaders say implementation of Uniform Civil Code will affect not just Muslims but other sections as well

July 04, 2023 07:32 pm | Updated 07:44 pm IST - Kozhikode

Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) State president Panakkad Syed Sadiq Ali Shihab Thangal greeting leaders of Muslim organisations at a meeting in Kozhikode on Tuesday. IUML national general secretary P.K. Kunhalikutty is seen.

Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) State president Panakkad Syed Sadiq Ali Shihab Thangal greeting leaders of Muslim organisations at a meeting in Kozhikode on Tuesday. IUML national general secretary P.K. Kunhalikutty is seen. | Photo Credit: K. Ragesh

A group of Muslim organisations in Kerala, led by the Indian Union Muslim League (IUML), have called for “political and legal fight” against the proposed Uniform Civil Code (UCC), making it clear that its implementation will affect not just Muslims but others as well.

The decision follows a meeting of a coordination committee of Muslim organisations such as the IUML, two factions of the Samastha Kerala Jamiyyathul Ulama, factions of the Kerala Nadvathul Mujahideen, Jamaat-e-Islami Hind, Muslim Education Society, and the Muslim Service Society held in Kozhikode on Tuesday.

Addressing the media after the meeting, IUML State president Panakkad Syed Sadiq Ali Shihab Thangal said the UCC would adversely affect the social system of the country. “This will affect not just Muslims, but the tribespeople and the residents of northeastern States as well. Everyone should respond to it together in a responsible way. There should not be any room for communal polarisation. There should not be any protests in the streets,” he said.

He said model seminars would be held across the State, including in Kozhikode, to create awareness of the UCC among the people. The meeting entrusted a core committee with discussing how awareness programmes can be organised. The IUML leaders said that a draft of the code was expected to be presented in Parliament during the Monsoon Session scheduled to begin on July 20. The nature of the legal fight would be finalised after going through the draft, they added.

On CPI(M) event

However, when asked about a similar event planned by the Communist Party of India (Marxist) [CPI(M)], to which the IUML too has been reportedly invited, the Thangal said the party would not entertain any attempt to portray the UCC as a Muslim-only issue. “If such an event involving all sections of society is held, we will cooperate with it,” he added.

IUML national general secretary P.K. Kunhalikutty too sidestepped questions about the party’s position on the protests proposed by the CPI(M). He said that it was not on the agenda of the meeting. “Whether we will attend the CPI(M) seminar is irrelevant. It is also not relevant if we will cooperate with the CPI(M) in the anti-UCC protests,” Mr. Kunhalikutty said.

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