Not against UCC, but don’t endorse the way BJP seeks to implement it: Mayawati

Lucknow: Bahujan Samaj Party chief Mayawati on Sunday said her party is not opposed to the idea of a Uniform Civil Code (UCC), but does not endorse the way the BJP and its government “seek to implement it in the country”.

In her first remarks on the UCC since the Law Commission on June 14 invited opinion from the public and religious bodies on the matter, the former chief minister said the Constitution mentions securing a UCC for all citizens but not “to impose it forcibly”.

It should be implemented through consensus and awareness which is not being done, she told a press conference here. “Indulging in narrow politics in the garb of UCC is not in the interest of the country. And this is what is being done.” The debate over the UCC gathered momentum after Prime Minister Narendra Modi on June 27 pushed for its implementation and accused the Opposition of instigating Muslims over the sensitive issue of family laws.

Mayawati said, “Our party is not against the UCC, but it does not endorses the way in which the BJP and its government seek to implement it in the country.” “Article 44 of the Constitution of India mentions about the endeavour to make a UCC, and not to impose it forcibly,” she said, adding the BJP-led government should take steps to implement UCC in light of these provisions. A uniform law for people from all religions will strengthen the country rather than weakening it, and also create harmony and brotherhood, the BSP supremo said.

“For this, awareness and consensus have been considered the best (way). However, it (awareness and consensus) is not being done,” she said.

Mayawati said India is home to people from different religions who follow their own customs, traditions, working style, and rituals– from birth to the death. “So, whenever this law is made, it should be done keeping all these points in mind.” Hitting out at the BJP, she said the way they are pursuing the matter betrays a politics of “narrow self-interest” rather than that of “sarvajan hitaye, sarvajan sukhaye” (for the welfare and happiness of all).

“There should be no bias in (implementing) it. And if the BJP government does it that way (without bias), our party will adopt a positive approach, otherwise our party will oppose it,” she said.

Raising the issue of price rise, Mayawati said, “It’s a common discussion these days that the government does not pay attention to major problems, and in order to divert attention, these people (ruling party) are talking about UCC.”