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Paper Details Paper Code: SP-CLA-V2-02 Category: Special Paper Date of Submission for First Review: March 28, 2022 Date of Acceptance: July 6, 2022 Citation: Dr. Rangaswamy D., “Assessing Contribution of Indian Judiciary for the Reformation of Muslim Personal Law in India”, 2, AIJACLA, 7, 7-27 (2022) Author Details: Dr. Rangaswamy D., Assistant Professor of Law, Karnataka State Law University

Abstract India is a secular country. Secularism is the basic structure of the Constitution of India. The secular nature of the constitution resulted in unrestrained practice, profess and propagation of their religion according to their own choice. Accordingly, religious diversity is freely practiced and propagated in the country. However, the fundamental religious practices of these religions and their dissimilarities have triggered serious debate in terms of gender justice and the Uniform Civil Code (UCC) of the country. It is a longstanding agenda of the government strategically avoided, but judicially continuously activated in the country. The argument put forward for the support of the UCC is that as the personal laws yield uneven and unjust practice, UCC should be materialized by the government. Contrary to this argument, the argument put forward for the recognition of personal is secular nature of the Constitution. In this context, it is interesting to note that the Indian judiciary has immensely contributed and heralded for the enunciation of secularism. Notwithstanding such decisions, the judiciary has equally articulated the inherent injustice associated with the personal practices of Muslim law. The purpose of this paper is to evaluate the Muslim personal law of the country in the backdrop of the judicial verdicts. Keywords: Judiciary, Personal laws, Uniform Civil Code, Gender Justice


Religious belief is the highest order of human society.[1]The same is reflected under international,[2] regional[3] and constitutional provisions[4] of Human Rights. In the context of religious liberty, State neutrality in religious matters is strongly emphasized under the legal system. [5]The moral, intellectual and physical integrity of individuals shall be inviolable. The state shall respect and protect the human person and human dignity. The strong affiliation with religion fundamentally structured the political systems of the nations. [6] Religion could also decide the basic structure of the political system of the country. [7] It shall be fundamental traits of the legal order that it shall be oriented towards the dignity and full development of the human personality and strengthening the respect for freedom and fundamental rights. It shall regulate the conditions contradicting these basic principles of dignity, freedom and fundamental rights. The religious practices and cultural norms shall respect the personal needs of the individual and the State shall guarantee a system ensuring such needs.

The severe implications of personal laws resulted in serious questions about reconciling distinctive religious legacy with universal global practices and rational standards. Particularly, it poses a great challenge to the ability of the State to reconcile claims of the religious denominations with the claims of individual fulfilment and gender justice. By existing laws, notwithstanding the religious practices of those who practiced them, the State shall ensure proper protection for the basic rights and freedoms of the individual. Religious practices should not be at the cost of the fundamental rights of the individuals.

India is a country that has been deeply influenced by personal laws. Every religious community personal matter is governed by its laws in the country. Just as the Hindus, the Christians, the Parsis and the Jews, the Muslims are also governed by their laws. The Muslim Personal Law (Shariat) Application Act, 1937, (Shariat Act) which is mainly based on customs and usages, dealt with all affairs of the Muslim community in India.[8] However, it has been blamed for the conventional and discriminatory practices. Though there has always been a proposal to reform Muslim Personal Law, the efforts are vitiated by the orthodox sections of the community. The lessons of history, the changing conditions of society, the ever-varying pattern of civilization and the evolutionary process in the economic structure of the modern world have not been taken into consideration by the personal law and the result is that Islamic law remains backward and underdeveloped in many parts of the world.[9]The Shariat Act, which was expected to be a catalyst to the Muslim community to the modern world was failed to take note of many aspects. It is evident from the numerous legislations enacted by the Indian parliament and the revolutionary decisions taken by the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India in the vivid areas of the personal and religious facets of the community. In the backdrop of the strong protest against the Uniform Civil Code, it is the better way to preserve the diversity of the personal laws by improving the discriminatory rules and practices practiced under the personal legal regime of these communities. The role played by the Judiciary is commendable to sensitize the system on the discriminatory practices of the personal laws by mapping the substance of these laws with fundamental rights and freedoms guaranteed under the Constitution of India.

Against this backdrop, this paper evaluates the Muslim personal law in detail with the support of the verdicts of the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India to root out the discriminatory practices and injustices to the community, especially Muslim women. The paper identifies the role, rights and disabilities endowed upon the woman which is severely affected by the religious and ethnic communities. The paper explores the role played by the Indian judiciary in reflecting and shaping the social identities and cultural practices of the communities in India. The paper also identifies the role, rights and disabilities endowed upon the woman which is severely affected by the religious and ethnic communities. The paper concludes that the rationality of the judicial decisions is to be accepted and gender justice has to be upheld in the community which is ensured under the legal systems of the Muslim majority countries.


Though India and Pakistan are remarkably different in terms of size and population, the problems encountered by both countries are similar. Both these problems were an integral part of undivided India. Both the countries were under the imperialism of Britain. Hindus and Muslims had shared it, ruling or ruled according to time and place, for a millennium and had mingled as subjects or subordinates of the British raj from its earliest days.[10]Both Hindu and Muslim practices underwent a substantial change during the British period. It developed in such a way that the social and cultural practices disrupted and subordinated to the hegemonic European culture. The Hindu and Muslim practices started to grow in line with modernity and scientific temper. The British administration flourished the system against the backdrop of the changed values and culture. The social movement instigated by English education and social reformers entangled fundamentalists with modern reformists. The British administration was least bothered about the development of the society rather than their commercial interest. They adopted and followed a strategic practice strengthening the commercial interest of the British rule in the guise of the reform of the society. They are very much aware of the fact that the intervention of the Britishers with the diversity of social and cultural system could be the reason for the displacement of the British administration in India. The origin and development of personal laws was the very unfortunate decision of the British administration. Much importantly, the application of personal laws for Hindus and Muslims is the product of Hasting plan.[11] The legal system of both these religious denominations was scattered and unstructured. The two races, Hasting writes the Muhammadans and the Hindus, had their legal systems. But whilst that was contained in a digest made in the reign of the Emperor Aurangazeb, universally acknowledged by the courts, that of the latter was absolute without order or arrangements.[12]

The term 'personal' indicates individual nature and traits associated with the human being. It appertains to the persons of the particular category. It belongs to an individual confined to his matters. It analyses the quality of the human being in line with the basic tenets of the particular group. It explains the cultural and religious practices of the population considered as part of the larger aggregate. India is a country with rich culture and heritage. It is the abode of many religions and philosophies. Secularism has been one of the features of Indian life from time immemorial. Thus, in respect of personal matters like marriage, divorce, succession, adoption and maintenance, different personal laws are followed depending on the religion of the person. This gave rise to different marriage laws[13], succession laws and divorce laws applicable to different religions like Hinduism, Islam and Christianity.[14]In this secular state, all religions have been given adequate water and manure by the Constitution of India for their nourishment.[15]

The Indian Muslims are a substantial minority accounting for 11.67 per cent of India’s population and numbering over 95 million and the third-largest Muslim population in the world.[16] In the matters of inheritance, marriage, caste and other usages, the Hindus were subjected to Hindu law and Muslims were subjected to Muslim. After the calculated plan and design warren Hasting executed this plan.[17]Though there were serious defects with the personal laws of both Muslims and Hindus same was enforced by the Hasting. The rationale behind this plan, as pointed by Penderel Moon from the Hasting perception as follows; "It was … their sacred right to retain their system of law and justice. To deprive of it would be a grievance, to compel them to accept another a wanton tyranny. Even the most injudicious or most fanciful customs which ignorance or superstition may have introduced among them are perhaps preferable to any which could be substituted in their room. They are interwoven with their religion and are therefore revered as of the highest authority. They are conditions on which they hold their place in society, they think them equitable, and it is, therefore, no hardship to exact their obedience to them.”[18] According to D.Smith “This system of personal law (as opposed to territorial law) was not without defects. It entirely ignored the fact that the Hindus were and are divided into numerous sects and subsects with differing laws and customs, and that different schools of Hindu law prevail in various parts of India. Similarly, there are two major divisions in Islam, the Shias and the Sunnis, as well as local variations in Muslim law and custom. Nevertheless, Hasting’s basic plan, although modified in details, has continued in operation to the present time.”[19]

Personal Laws of Hindu

Notwithstanding its antiquity, Hindu law was not codified until colonial rule.[20] Warren Hasting was the mastermind in consolidating and assigning statutory status to Hindu law.[21]It was due to his enthusiasm and close harmony with Hindu customs and practices. This was also introduced for gaining the confidence of the people of this country. He was clever enough to understand thoroughly the character of the people, their gentle ways, their devotion to their families, their superstitions, the mixture of simplicity and cunning which characterized them, their geniality and their humour.[22]He opined that “Every accumulation of knowledge and especially such as is obtained by social communication with people over whom we exercise a dominion founded on the right of conquest, is useful to the State; it is the grain of humanity: in the specific instance which I have stated, it lessens the weight of China by which the natives are held in subjection; and it imprints on the hearts of our countrymen the sense and obligation of benevolence."[23]This task of codification was initiated because of the administration of the justice system of the country.[24] Thus the roots of the secular nature of the nation go back to the pre-independence period.[25]

Personal Laws of Muslim

The Shariat Act,1937 generally governs the marriage, divorce and other aspects of the life of a person who believes in Islam. In the religious sense, Islam means 'submission to the will of God and in the secular sense Islam means the ‘establishment of peace’. The word Islam is a comprehensive one and does not express any association with any particular person, people or country. The object of this religion is to create[26] a sense of obedience and submission to Allah. His ordinances and thereby to walk on the right path. Those who follow his path are Muslims.[27]The essence of Mahomedanism consists in the faith that there is only one God and that Mohammed is his prophet.[28] The Muslim faith ordains that their law is based on 'God made law' and not on 'man-made law'. When a Muslim may convert to another religion or he renounces Islam, he will cease to be a Muslim. The Shariat courts are not established by law and they are not part of the corpus juris of a state. The opinion expressed by the Shariat courts is not enforceable.[29]

Legal Protection afforded to the Muslim Community in India

All general laws existing in the country widely covers Muslims also. However, Muslims are governed by the various legislations enacted by the parliament or by the state legislature. In the pre-independent period, the British Government enacted certain legislation restricting its application only to Muslims. The Usurious Loans Act, 1918, Religious Toleration Act, Freedom of Religion Act,1850, the Guardians and Wards Act,1890, the Mussalman Wakf Validating Act, 1913, and the Mussalman Wakf Validating Act,1930 belongs to that sort of enactments for the Mussalmans enacted by the British people. Moreover, the Child Marriage Restraint Act,1929,[30] the Shariat Act, 1937, and the Dissolution of Muslim Marriage Act,1939, the Indian Contract Act, 1872and the TheWakf Act, 1954, the Caste Disabilities Removal Act,[31]1956, the Indian Evidence Act, 1872,[32] the Special Marriage Act, 1954,[33]Indian Succession Act, 1925[34]The Dissolution of Muslim Marriage Act,1939 [35]etc., have considerably affected, supplemented and modified the Muslim Law. The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Divorce) Act, 1986 has been enacted to provide separate laws for maintenance in respect of divorced Muslims. Apart from that the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Act, 2019 is the revolutionary step taken by the Indian Parliament to ensure the rights of Muslim women from indiscriminate use of talaq by their husbands.

Marriage among Muslims

In India, Muslims are predominantly Sunnis and by and large, follow the Hanafi school. The Shias in India largely follow the IthnaAshari school. The traditional Shariat law is based on the concept of justice. It is the fact that the Shariat is a compendium of rules guiding the life of a Muslim from birth to death in all aspects of law, ethics and etiquette. Marriage or Nikah among the Muslims is a 'solemn pact' between a man and a woman, soliciting each other's life companionship, which in law takes the form of a contract.[36]Islam does not regard marriage as a sacrament. It is regarded in Islam as the basis of society. As per the Quran, marriage is an institution that gives the uplift of man and is a means for the continuance of the human race. The polygamous nature of marriage is a notable fact in this respect. The dominant position conferred by the Muslim jurisprudence on husband is responsible for the existence and recognition of the institution of polygamy.[37]Certain formalities like offer and acceptance are the essentials of a Muslim marriage. In this contractual form of marriage, mahr is considered as the consideration. As per the Quran, mahr is paid as a mark of respect to the wife. The parentage and the concept of the legitimacy of children is the direct outcome of the concept of marriage. The parentage of a child is determined on the principle that it always follows the marital bed.[38]

Property Concerns

The right over the property will give some sort of financial independence. It is a prominent factor to ensure gender equality and gender justice. In the patriarchal Indian society, women were not given any property rights under their laws. However, under the Islamic Law of succession, women like men had a fixed share in the inheritance. The women get half the inheritance which their brothers get.[39] Whenever a female inherits property, she takes her share and without any restrictions. The rules relating to inheritance were different during the Pre-Islamic period. After the advent of Islam, new principles of inheritance were promulgated by the Quran and the traditions of the Prophet. It has introduced new reforms like the females and cognates are competent to inherit. The husband and wife have been made each other's legal heirs, Parents and ascendants are entitled to inherit even in the presence of descendants. [40]


Muslim jurisprudence confers on the husband almost absolute power of divorcing his wife but denies that freedom to the wife. Moreover, the wife can obtain a divorce only when the husband agrees to her proposal. The absence of such a provision for divorce on the part of women has entailed unspeakable misery to innumerable Muslim women in British India. The Hanafi Jurists have laid down that in cases in which the application of Hanafi Law causes hardship, it is permissible to apply the provisions of the Maliki, Shafii or Hanabali Law. Under Islamic law, divorce is classified into three categories. Talaq is a means of a divorce, at the instance of the husband. Khula is another mode of divorce, this divorce is at the instance of the wife. The third category of divorce is mubaraat divorce by mutual consent. Talaq, namely, divorce at the instance of the husband, is also of three kinds talaq-e-Ahsan, talaq-e-Hasan and talaq-e-biddat. In India, talaq-e-ahsan is considered the most reasonable form of divorce, whereas, talaq-e-hasan is also considered as reasonable. Talaq-e-biddat is neither recognized by the Quran nor by hadith and as such, is to be considered as sacrosanct to the Muslim religion. Talaq-e-biddat is practised in India by 90% of the Muslims (who belong to the Hanafi school). The Muslim population in India is over 13% (-about sixteen crores) out of which 4-5 crores are Shias, and the remaining are Sunnis (besides, about 10 lakhs Ahmadias) mostly belonging to the Hanafi school. And therefore, it would not be incorrect to conclude, that an overwhelming majority of Muslims in India, have had recourse to the severance of their matrimonial ties, by way of talaq-e-biddat as a matter of their religious belief as a matter of their faith.[41]

The Muslim law of maintenance differs from the law of maintenance in most other systems of the law. The obligation to maintain his children is not an absolute obligation under the Muslim law if they have their sources of income or property. Even the obligation to maintain one's aged and infirm parents arises only if one is in easy circumstances and the parents are destitute.[42] The Muslim husband's obligation to maintain his wife children and aged parents was brought under a uniform standard by remodelling section 488 of the Criminal Procedure (Amendment ) Act,1973. The insertion of section 125 entitles a wife, whether Muslim or non-Muslim, is entitled to claim maintenance against the husband on the ground of the husband’s neglect or refusal to maintain her.

Position after passing of the Muslim Women (Protection of rights on Divorce) Act, 1986

The position prevailed in maintenance was, once a Muslim husband has divorced his wife and had paid her dower, no maintenance order could be passed against him under section 125 of the Criminal Procedure Code. The decision in Shah Bano Case[43] led to some controversy as to the obligation of the Muslim husband to pay maintenance to the divorced wife. To nullify the decision in the Shah Bano case, the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Divorce) Act, 1986 was passed. The intention behind the legislature was to protect the rights of Muslim women who have been divorced by or have obtained a divorce from, their husbands. The Act provides that a Muslim divorced woman shall be entitled to reasonable and fair provisions and maintenance within the period of iddat by her former husband and in case she maintains the children born to her before or after her divorce, such reasonable provisions and maintenance would be extended period to a period of two years from the dates of birth of the children. She will also be entitled to mahr or dower and all the properties were given to her by her relatives, friends, husband and husband's relatives. If the above benefits are not given to her at the time of divorce, she is entitled to apply to the Magistrate for an order directing her former husband to provide for such maintenance, the payment of mahr or dower or the delivery of the properties. [44]The Act also imposes an obligation on wakfs to provide maintenance to divorced women in case of the absence of relatives to maintain them.


Personal law is the hub of gender injustice. While emphasizing personal laws in the backdrop of religious practices, the same set of laws manifests greater inequality and injustice for the woman. The negative dimension of the prejudice of the personal laws is demonstrated in the scholarly views expressed by giant personalities.

Dr B.R.Ambedkar says " The religious conceptions in this country are so vast they cover every aspect of life from birth to death. There is nothing which is not a religion and if personal law is to be saved, I am sure about it that in social matters we will come to a standstill… There is nothing extraordinary in saying that we ought to strive hereafter to limit the definition of religion in such a manner that we shall not extend it beyond beliefs and such rituals as may be connected with ceremonials that are essentially religious. It is not necessary that the sort of laws, for instance, laws relating to tenancy or laws relating to succession, should be governed by religion… I do not understand why religion should be given this vast expansive jurisdiction to cover the whole of life and to prevent the legislature from encroaching upon that field."[45]Muslim personal law did many rational and revolutionary concepts which could not be conceived by the other systems of the law then in force. It provided for the right of inheritance to the females even when there were male heirs and also the modern concept of divorce by mutual consent, while the other systems of law took so many centuries to do so.[46] The contemporary situation forces Muslim women to sit back at home as mere equipment to do household chores and a reproductive machine. Barring the exception of a few, Muslim women are discriminated against from all walks of life. Gender justice is still a dream to be achieved by women in India especially Muslim women. The indiscriminate use of talaq was a serious concern among the women in the Muslim community. The Union Government has taken serious note of the decision taken by the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India regarding triple talaq and has enacted new legislation prohibiting triple talaq.[47]As per the Act, the pronouncement of talaq by a Muslim husband made a cognizable and non-bailable offence. Moreover, any pronouncement of talaq by a Muslim husband upon his wife, by words, either spoken or written or in electronic form or any other manner made as void.[48] Apart from that, the Act has also prescribed for the subsistence allowance for the divorced wife and also for the custody of the minor child.


The growth of Muslim jurisprudence in Indian soil has many stages and the process of growth was slow at many times due to the touchstone of the Constitution of India. Here it is interesting to note the position in other countries. In the United Arab Emirates, the Federal Constitution declares Islam to be the official religion. The Constitution also provides for freedom of religion, by established customs. The courts are very much concerned with the reconciliation rather than the separation of the spouses.[49]. If reconciliation attempts fail, the court shall fix an amount to be deposited by the husband in the court within thirty days towards payment of the wife's post-divorce dues and maintenance of children.[50] No divorce is permissible for a person who is not in his senses or is under coercion or provocation. Every divorce pronounced by the husband shall be revocable, except a third-time divorce.

In Sudan, which is another theocratic State, declares Islam to be its official religion. Muslims of the Sunni sect constitute its majority. A contingent divorce that is not meant to be effective immediately and is used as an inducement or threat shall have not to effect.[51] A formula of divorce coupled with a number, expressly or impliedly, shall affect only one divorce. Metaphorical expressions used for a divorce shall have the effect of dissolving the marriage only if the husband meant a divorce.

Muslims of the Sunni sect constitute its majority in Syria The Code of Personal Status 1953, says that no divorce shall take place when the man is drunk, out of his senses, or under duress.[52] A person is out of his senses when due to anger, etc. he does not appreciate what he says. Where a person divorces his wife the court may, if satisfied that he has arbitrarily done so without any reasonable cause and that as a result of the divorce the wife shall suffer damage and become destitute, give a decision, with due regard to the husband financial condition and the amount of wife's suffering, that he should pay her compensation not exceeding three years maintenance, in addition to maintenance payable during the period of Iddat. It may be directed to be paid either in a lump sum or in instalments as the circumstances of a case may require.

A talaq pronounced under the effect of intoxication or compulsion shall not be effective in Egypt.[53] It also deals with conditional talaq which is not meant to take effect immediately shall have no effect if it is used as an inducement to do some act or to abstain from it. Symbolic expressions of talaq, i.e., words that may or may not bear the implication of a divorce, shall not effect a divorce unless the husband intended it.[54] In Iraq no divorce shall be effective when pronounced by the persons mentioned below: (a) one who is intoxicated, insane or imbecile, under duress, or not in his senses due to anger, sudden calamity, old age or sickness; (b) a person in death-sickness or in a condition which in all probabilities is fatal and of which he dies, survived by his wife. When a person intends to divorce his wife, he shall institute a suit in the Court of Personal Status requesting that it be effected and that an order be issued, therefore. If a person cannot so approach the court, registration of the divorce in the court during the period of Iddat shall be binding on him. The certificate of marriage shall remain valid till it is cancelled by the court.

Jordan is a secular State. Muslims of the Sunni sect constitute its majority. Talaq shall not be effective if pronounced under intoxication, bewilderment, compulsion, mental disorder, depression or effect of sleep. Where an irrevocable Talaq was pronounced once or twice, renewal of marriage with the consent of parties is not prohibited. The Code of Personal Status, 1984, of Kuwait, talaq may be affected by major and sane men acting by their free will and understanding the implications of their action. Therefore talaq shall not take effect if the husband is mentally handicapped, imbecile, under coercion, mistake, intoxication, fear or high anger affecting his speech and action. Moreover the Bangladesh Marriages and Divorces (Registration) Act,1974 makes it compulsory for the registration of marriages. It is evident from a close perusal of few provisions of these personal laws that, Women are not treated like chattels. In most of these Muslim majority countries registration of marriage is compulsory.


The influence of International Human Rights laws in moulding the shape of gender justice is remarkable. International instruments such as Universal Declaration of Human Rights, 1948, International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights,1966, International Covenant of Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, 1966, International Convention on Rights of Child, Convention of the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women, 1979, Convention on Rights of Children, 1989 etc., have extensively been referred by the Supreme Court of India to strengthen social justice for the weaker sections of the society.[55]

The judiciary in India, being the watchdog of the fundamental rights of the people, is very keen to ensure the rights of the masses irrespective of their law constraints. However, religion being the most delicate and sensitive subject, courts have shown its restrained role rarely. But, there are some judicial pronouncements to be highlighted because of the human right touch the judiciary has given in that subject and the upholding of gender justice. The observation made by the Bombay High Court, in State of Bombay v. Narasu Appa Mali [56] is very relevant in this context. It is said that personal laws ought to be examined, in the light of the overarching goal of gender justice, and dignity of women.


Marriage is indisputably an institution of great importance for human beings both individually and socially. The basis of marriage shall be natural love, affection and human dignity. The recognition and practice of child marriage and polygamy under Muslim personal law have severely been criticized and timely intervention of the judiciary settled this social unrest.

The tussle between minimum age fixed under Islam and age prescribed under Prohibition of Child Marriage Act, 2006 has come up before the court.[57] In this case, the PCMA was challenged as violative of the constitution because of the Mahomedan personal law which permits a Muslim girl to marry either on attaining puberty or completing 15 years. The central government strongly advocated PCMA in the background of the progressive decisions rendered by the Supreme Court of India in series of Muslim personal laws. On the other hand, the petitioner assaulted the arguments of the central government by referring to old-line arguments of Islam. The divisional bench of Madras High Court (Madurai Bench) comprising justice S.Tamilvanan and Justice V.S.Ravi disregarded the arguments of the petitioner and held that

"… any claim to perform the marriage of a girl less than 18 years would not be for the welfare of the girl child but, such marriage would be against the interest of the girl, whereby education and empowerment of the girl are being denied unreasonably… Judicial wisdom in the landmark decision has ruled that a Muslim woman is equally entitled to get rights like any other woman of other religions. In the same way, the Prohibition of Child Marriage Act, 2006 would enable Muslim girls to get proper education, empowerment and also the opportunity of understanding to lead proper marital life like other girls, which cannot be considered as an enactment against the Muslim Community in general. Providing education and empowerment to any girl child will certainly strengthen the society, which would not be detrimental to any religion."

The factual and legal condition of polygamy is that it is criminalized in line with sati and devadasi. The Hindu and Christian personal laws mandate monogamy.[58] It is therefore evident that the practice of polygamy was not only done away with amongst Hindus but the same was also made punishable as a criminal offence.[59] Historically polygamy was the practice cutting across the Greeks and Romans, Hindus, Jews and Zoroastrians.[60] However, in the context of social reform, the reformative steps have been taken by the states by bulldozering the practice of polygamy in the guise of religious sanction. Notwithstanding, such legislative steps, the Muslim community practices polygamy as the inherent practice of personal laws. The judicial stamp for polygamy in certain cases sustained the practice for a considerable period. However, in the Ahmedabad Women Action Group case [61]the Court rejected the petition sought for declaration of certain practices of Muslim personal law as unconstitutional. The court has taken a highly restrictive stand saying that the issues that came up before the court are all policy matters in which courts don't have any concern.

In Javed v. the State of Haryana[62] prefigured the necessity of examining polygamy in the touchstone of social reform and public order. The court viewed that

"It may be permissible for Muslims to enter into four marriages with four women and for anyone whether a Muslim or belonging to any other community or religion to procreate as many children as he likes but no religion in India dictates or mandates as an obligation to enter into bigamy or polygamy or to have children more than one. What is permitted or not prohibited by religion does not become a religious practice or a positive tenet of religion. Practice does not acquire the sanction of religion simply because it is permitted. Assuming the practice of having more wives than one or procreating more children than one is a practice followed by any community or group of people, the same can be regulated or prohibited by legislation in the interest of public order, morality and health or by any law providing for social welfare and reform which the impugned legislation does."

Subsequently in Khursheed Ahmad Khan v. State Of U.P.&Ors[63] again the court restated its stand on polygamy and emphasized the need of testing religious practice in the backdrop of the series of cases decided by the various high courts and Supreme Court, the Supreme Court of India reaffirmed the decision of the Javed case and upheld the practice of polygamy in the personal law.


Right to Maintenance is one of the controversial issues of personal laws in India. The right to maintenance is based on the fundamental moral obligation that every woman entered into a matrimonial relationship shall be entitled to be maintained by the husband. The legal regime on personal laws of the country has provided concrete statutory force for the maintenance.[64] Islam mandates that a married woman shall not be denied her right to maintenance entitled under Nikah by marital relationship. However, divorce deprives her of this absolute right and diminishes her right to maintenance. The personal law of Muslims provided that the liability of the husband to maintain her wife extends only for iddat period beyond that the husband is free from the obligation. It shall be lawful for Islam to discharge Muslim husbands from the obligation due to the dissolution of the matrimonial relation and segregation of husband and wife.

In a landmark judgement, the Supreme Court of India in Mohd. Ahmed Khan v. Shah Bano Begum and Others,[65] held that although the Muslim law limits the husband's liability to provide for the maintenance of the divorced wife to the period of iddat, it would be incorrect and unjust if the Muslim divorced wife is unable to maintain herself. The court concluded that, if the divorced wife can maintain herself, the husband's liability ceases with the expiration of the period of iddat, but if she is unable to maintain herself after the period of iddat, she is entitled to have recourse to Section 125 of the Code of Criminal Procedure.

The moral standard of the husband to maintain his wife irrespective of the religious beliefs and customary practices was laid down by the Supreme Court of India in this leading case. The moral fabric of the maintenance which was entangled with conservative Muslim practices and blurred by the fundamentalists was shed to light by the Supreme Court through this historic judgment. The rationale of the Court in applying secular law for the maintenance and outrightly rejecting the argument based on Islam was as follows:

Neglect by a person of sufficient means to maintain these and the inability of these persons to maintain themselves are the objective criteria which determine the applicability of section 125. Such provisions, which are essential of a prophylactic nature, cut across the barriers of religion. True that they do not supplant the personal law of the parties but, equally, the religion professed by the parties or the state of the personal law by which they are governed, cannot have any repercussion on the applicability of such laws unless, within the framework of the Constitution, their application is restricted to a defined category of religious groups or classes The liability imposed by section 125 to maintain close relatives who are indigent is founded upon the individuals' obligation to the society to prevent vagrancy and destitution. That is the moral edict of the law and morality cannot be clubbed with religion.”

The moral idea and ethical principle of personal laws of the members of the Muslim community were remarkably refined through this verdict. The judgment instilled new blood for gender justice contrasted with behavioural patterns and mores adhered to by the Muslim community for a considerable period.

The verdict of ShahBano Begum resulted in the enactment of the draconian constitutional validity of the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Divorce) Act, 1986 in the backdrop of severe protest of the Muslim community against the decision of the Supreme Court of India. The Act was enacted by the Parliament to iron out the unrest administered by the Shah Bano Begum by extending statutory recognition for the judicially broken Muslim personal law. The scheme of the MWPRDA intended to codify and regulate the obligation of the Muslim husband due to a Muslim woman divorcee by excluding them from the scope of Section 125 of Cr.P.C. The core question adjudicated in this instant case was the constitutional validity of MWPRDA. The striking contention of the petitioner in this instant case was that the liability of the husband to pay maintenance would be evaporated by Section.127 (3) (b) of the Cr. P.C as the provision explicitly recognized discharge of liability of husband to pay maintenance on account of the divorce given by a wife to the husband.[66]

The fivefold arguments, as summarized by the Supreme Court, were put forward by Smt. Kapila Hingorani and Smt. Indira Jaisingi n view of the outrageous attempt of the Indian parliament to appease the Muslim community and attempt to infuse vote bank politics sternly attacked both the Central Government and fundamentalists of the Muslim community. On the other hand, the argument put forward by the Central Government based on reconciling the gender under Section 3 of the MWPRDA[67] and authenticity of the personal law of Muslims based on various scholars was outrightly rejected by the Court.[68] It overtly contributed to the inter cooling of gender justice and personal laws.

Attacking Section 4 of the MWPRDA Dr A.M.Singhvi, the most learned and Senior advocate Supreme Court of India appeared on behalf of the petitioner argued that the present scheme of the Act is illusionary for the following reasons. Firstly, it does not provide sustenance from the parties out of the matrimonial relationship. Secondly, the wakf Board may not able to support such destitute women since they are themselves perennially starved of resources. Thirdly, the potential legates of destitute women would either be too young or too old to be able to extend requisite support.

In our society, whether they belong to the majority of the minority group, what is apparent is that there exists a great disparity in the matter of economic resourcefulness between a man and a woman. Our society is male-dominated both economically and socially and women are assigned, invariably, a dependent role, irrespective of the class of society to which she belongs. A woman on her marriage very often, though highly educated, gives up her all-other avocations and entirely devotes herself to the welfare of the family, in particular, she shares with her husband, her emotions, sentiments, mind and body, and her investment in the marriage is her entire life a sacramental sacrifice of her self and is far too enormous to be measured in terms of money. When a relationship of this nature breaks up, in what manner we could compensate her so far as emotional fracture or loss of investment is concerned, there can be no answer. It is small solace to say that such a woman should be compensated in terms of money towards her livelihood and such a relief which partakes basic human rights to secure gender and social justice is universally recognized by persons belonging to all religions and it is difficult to perceive that Muslim law intends to provide a different kind of responsibility by passing on the same to those unconnected with the matrimonial life such as the heirs who were likely to inherit the property from her or the wakf boards. Such an approach appears to us to be a kind of distortion of the social facts. Solutions to such societal problems of universal magnitude of horizons of basic human rights, culture, dignity and decency of life and dictates of necessity in the pursuit of social justice should be invariably left to be decided on considerations other than religion or religious faith or beliefs or national, sectarian, racial or communal constraints. Bearing this aspect in mind, we have to interpret the provisions of the Act in question.”

The five-judges bench consisting of G.B. Pattanaik, S. Rajendra Babu, D.P. Mohapatra, Doraiswamy Raju &Shivaraj V. Patil unequivocally interlocked secularism and feminism with golden thread. The prudent and commonsensical interpretation given for competing arguments invigorated eclipsed personal laws of the country. After listening to both sides the court contemplated the following proposition on the applicability of personal laws on the maintenance of Muslim women.

Firstly, the maintenance to be provided for Muslim women covers reasonable and fair arrangements to be made by the Muslim husband. Secondly, the reasonable and fair provision does not confine to the iddat period and it goes beyond the iddat period if it is required for the Muslim woman. Thirdly, in the case of an unmarried divorcee woman unable to maintain herself after an iddat period can claim maintenance from the relatives who are liable to maintain her in proportion to their entitlement over the property of the unmarried divorcee woman. Finally, the MWPRDA does not violate Article 14, Article 15 and Article 21 of the Constitution.[69]

The pragmatic and practical construction of MWPRDA by the Court in mapping traits of personal laws with fundamental freedoms and basic rights laid down a foundation for the glorious development of the status of Muslim women in India. The line of reasoning widened the sense of satisfaction for Muslim women and accelerated their trust and belief in the judiciary in overthrowing subtle accounts of gender injustice. The Court counterbalanced the sovereign legislative power of the parliament with orthodox practices of the Muslim community.

Triple Talaq

The traditional sorrow of the personal laws of the Muslim personal law in India was triple Talaq. The triple talaq rooted with religious rites and social usages completely submerged equality with oppression and tyranny of Muslim fundamentalism. The conservative story of triple subjugated and severely abridged dignity and humanity of the Muslim woman in terms of their matrimonial rights. The female community has no means of turning out the religious authority and dictates. The existence and continuation of the matrimonial life of the Woman were completed subjected to whims and fancies of the male-dominated society till the judgment of the Supreme Court of India.

In SharayaBano v. Union of India,[70] the bench comprising Rohinton Fali Nariman and Uday Umesh Lalit, the judiciary extended its helping hands to Muslim women by declaring triple talaq as unconstitutional. This judicial ruling set a reformative step by analyzing triple talaq in the backdrop of the Due to Process Test, Judicial Responsibility Test,[71] Proportionality Test,[72]Discrimination Test,[73] Essentiality Test,[74] Manifest Arbitrariness Test,[75] and Unreasonableness Test[76] as contemplated by Supreme Court. According to the rationale of the Court, a triple talaq is only a form of talaq permissible in law but not mandatory practice of the Muslim community. It is sinful according to Hanafi school of law and would not constitute an essential part of Muslim religious practice. The court also observed that non-practice of triple talaq will not affect the integrity of the Muslim religious practice as perceived by the Sunni Muslims.

“… triple talaq is instant and irrevocable, it is obvious that any attempt at reconciliation between the husband and wife by two arbiters from their families, which is essential to save the marital tie, cannot ever take is clear that this form of talaq is manifestly arbitrary in the sense that the marital tie can be broken capriciously and whimsically by a Muslim man without any attempt at reconciliation to save it. This form of talaq must, therefore, be held to be violative of the fundamental right contained under Article 14 of the Constitution of India. In our opinion, therefore, the 1937 Act, insofar as it seeks to recognize and enforce triple talaq, is within the meaning of the expression “laws in force” in Article 13(1) and must be struck down as being void to the extent that it recognizes and enforces triple talaq. Since we have declared Section2 of the 1937 Act to be void to the extent indicated above on the narrower ground of it being manifestly arbitrary, we do not find the need to go into the ground of discrimination in these cases, as was argued by the learned Attorney General and those supporting him.”

The scope of the Uniform Civil Code

The various personal laws existing in the country has created a situation in which the courts have to adopt different laws for different religious sectors, regarding their marriage, divorce, inheritance etc. Article 44 of the Indian Constitution has given directions to the State to enact the Uniform Civil Code to all the citizens throughout the territory of India.[77] The apex court many times showed its anguish for the non-implementation of the uniform civil code.[78] A unified code is imperative both for the protection of the oppressed and the promotion of national unity and solidarity. Despite the repeated directions from the court and the social and human rights activists, a uniform code for all religions binding everyone is a distant dream in India. The political parties never wanted to leave the vote banks which they can accumulate only by acting as the apostles of minority communities. The Division bench of the Supreme Court in Sarla Mudgal Case[79] held that " since 1950 several governments had come and gone but they had failed to make any efforts towards implementing the constitutional mandate under Article 44 of the constitution." It is also observed that there is no necessary connection between religion and personal law in a civilized society. In another important case John Vallamattom v. Union of India,[80] the Hon’ble Supreme Court has once again expressed regret for the no enactment of the Common Civil Code. A Common Civil Code will enhance the cause of national integration by removing the contradictions based on ideologies. In Seema v. Ashwani Kumar,[81]the Supreme Court has held that all marriages, irrespective of their religion, be compulsorily registered. The court felt that this ruling was necessitated by the need for time as certain unscrupulous husbands deny marriages leaving the spouses in the lurch, be it for seeking maintenance, custody of children or inheritance of property. The judgement in this case, if implemented would have far-reaching effects and it would prevent child marriage, check bigamy and polygamy, help the women to exercise their rights under marriage, enable widows to claim an inheritance and deter husbands from deserting their wives.


No parallel lines can be drawn between the personal laws relating to one community and another community for making ground of discrimination.[82]In the absence of codified Muslim law, the controversy will continue and the Shariat Act will be treated as an enactment that doesn't have gender neutrality. But on a close appraisal of the Shariat Act, it can be inferred that there are some misconceptions about the Act among the general society and it has to be removed by allowing proper study in the respective areas. The deep-rooted patriarchal mindset of the masses is pointed out as the reason behind all upside downs in the personal laws. To remove polygamous marriages which is evil in modern society, registration of marriages of all communities should be made compulsory by all the States. It is existing in some states like Assam and Orissa at present. Every sort of reform should come within the community itself. For that religious leaders have to be extra conscious and religious teachings have to be implemented to all faithful. The Judiciary can play a vital role in protecting and safeguarding gender justice in all communities as it has done in the case of triple talaq judgment. The basic problem lies with the inalienable cultural mindset of the people who declined to adapt to changing conditions and requirements of the society. Moreover, a uniform civil code is imperative for ensuring non-discrimination and gender justice in the community.

The family of the religious denominations irrespective of religious practices shall strength the social value of the family. It shall preserve its lawful entity and strengthen its bonds and values. The level of protection provided for weaker sections such as women and children would be the benchmark to assess the value of society. The legal system should strive to mould the religious practices in line with the physical, moral and intellectual development of society. The State shall guarantee to reconcile equality of women with men in political, social, cultural and economic spheres of nation. To safeguard personal rights, freedoms and guarantees, the role to be played by the judiciary is remarkable that is characterized by the swiftness and given priority by the States across the globe. It is thus abundantly clear that the major legal regime in different civil and common law countries spanning the globe is to contemplate a uniform civil code for all the religious denominations irrespective of the divergent practices.

[1] . Art.34 & Art.36 of China (People’s Republic of) 1982; Art.57, Constitution of Cuba2018; Art.4 of Constitution of Fiji,2013. [2]. See Art.18 of Universal Declaration of Human Rights, 1948; Art.14 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, 1989 G.A. Res.44/25, U.N.Doc. A/44/736 (1989); Art.12 of International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families, 1990, A/RES/45/158, 2220UNTS3(July 2003); Art.1 of the Declaration on the Elimination of All Forms of Intolerance and of Discrimination Based on Religion or Belief, GAS 36/55 of 25 November 1981; Art.2 of the Declaration on the Rights of Persons Belonging to National or Ethnic, Religious and Linguistic Minorities, GAS 47/135 of 18 December 1992; Art.18 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, 1966. [3]. See Art.12 of the Additional Protocol of the American Convention on Human Rights in the Area of Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (Protocol of San Salvador); Art.3 of the American Declaration of the Rights and Duties of Man; Art.8 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights of 1981; Art. 10 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, 2016; Art.9 of European Convention on Human Rights, 1950. [4]. Art.24 of the Constitution of Albania 1998; Art.51 of the Constitution of Algeria 2020; Art.11 of the Constitution of Andorra 1993; Art.41 of the Constitution of Angola 2010; Art.11 of the Constitution Antigua and Barbuda 1981; Art.41 of Constitution of Armenia 1995; Art.116 of the Constitution of Australia 1901; Art.48 of Constitution of Azerbaijan 1995; Art.22 of Constitution of Bahamas 1973; Art.22 of Constitution of Bahrain 2002; Art.41 of the Constitution of the Bangladesh 1972; Art.31 of the Constitution of Belarus 1994; Art.19 and Art.20 of the Constitution of Belgium 1831. [5] . Art.4 (3) of Constitution of Fiji 2013. [6] . Art.2 of Algerian Constitution; Art.2 of Bahrain 2002. [7] . for example, the amendment of the Constitution is limited by religion under Art.234 (3) of the Algerian Constitution. [8]. For detailed personal laws of the Muslim Community, see Tyabji, Faiz Badruddin. Muhammadan Law: the Personal Law Of Muslims. 13th ed. Bombay: N.M.Tripathi and Company, 1940. [9]. Asaf A, Fyzee. A Modern Approach to Islam. Bombay: Asian Publishing House, 2008, p.32. [10] . Hodson, H. V. The Great Divide: Britain, India, Pakistan. London: Hutchinson, 1969, p.ix. [11] . Act of 1781. [12] . Malleson George Bruce. Life of Warren Hastings, First Governor-General of India. London: Chapman & Hall, 1894. p.107. [13]. See Hindu Marriage Act,1955, The Muslim Law of Marriage (Shariat), The Parsi Marriage and Divorce Act,1936, The Special Marriage Act,1954, The Indian Christian Marriage Act, 1872, The Foreign Marriage Act, 1969 etc. [14]. G.B. Reddy, Woman and the Law, 8th ed., Gogia Law Agency, Hyderabad,2011, p.10. [15]. See Article 25 of the Constitution of India, 1950. [16] . B.K.Kapoor, Indian Society structure and change, Ritu Publications, Jaipur,2013,p.187. [17] . Before the adoption of these personal laws, Warren Hasting got it translated to English with the help of scholars. [18] . Penderel Moon. Warren Hastings and British India. London: Hodder And Stoughton Ltd, 1917, p.105. [19] . Ibid, p.274. [20] . For historical accounts of Hindu law, see generally, Jolly Julius. Outlines of a History of the Hindu Law of Partition, Inheritance, and Adoption. Calcutta: Thacker Sprink and Company, 1885. [21] . Ibid. [22] . Malleson George Bruce. Life of Warren Hastings, First Governor-General of India. London: Chapman & Hall, 1894, p.28 [23]. Penderel Moon, supra note, 18, p.352 [24]. Ibid, p.103. [25] . The congress has solemnly and repeatedly declared its policy regarding the rights of minorities in India and has stated that it considers it its duty to protect those rights and ensure the widest possible scope for the development of those minorities and their participation in the fullest measure in the political, economic and cultural life of the nation. The objective of the Congress is an independent and united India where no class or group or majority or minority may exploit another to its advantage and where all the elements in the nation may co-operate together for the common good and advancement of the people in India." This resolution was adopted by the Congress Working Committee in October 1937 in the backdrop of the stunning attack by Mr Jinnah. See, Hodson, H. V. . The Great Divide: Britain, India, Pakistan. London: Hutchinson, 1969, p.7 [27]Aqil Ahmad, Mohammedan Law, Central Law Agency, Allahabad, 26th Ed.,2016,p.3 [28] T.V. Rao &Vijender Kumar, Family Law in India, S. Gogia & Company, Hyderabad,9th Ed.,2006, p.525 [28] Subba Rao & Vijender Kumar, Family Law in India, Hyderabad: S. Gogia & Company,9th Ed.,2006, p.525. [29] Vishva Lochan Madan v. Union of India, AIR 2014 SC 2957. [30].The Act has affected the Muslim rule of Puberty. It lays down that the minimum age of marriage for girls is the completion of 18 years and for boys’ completion of 21 years. [31] . which removes the disability of an heir arising on account of his apostasy or ex-communication. [32]. section 112 affects the Muslim law of gestation. The section lays down that a child born within 280 days of the dissolution of marriage shall be presumed to be the legitimate child of her father. [33] .it applies only to those Muslims who solemnizes or registers their marriage under the Act. [34] . If a Muslim solemnizes his marriage under the Act, the succession of his property is governed by the Indian Succession Act only. [35] . It confers a right of judicial divorce on a Muslim wife on certain grounds. [36] . Bhatnagar's, Commentary on Muslim Women & Their Rights, New Delhi: Whyte’s & Company,4th ed.,2019-20, p.85 [37] . Paras Diwan, Muslim Law in Modern India, Haryana: Allahabad Law Agency, 13th ed., 2018, p.45 [38]. Ibid at 115. [39].Saadiya, Muslim Personal Law and Gender Equality Concerns in India, Advances in Social Science, Education and Humanities Research, International Conference on Law and Justice (ICLJ 2017) p. 162. [40] .S.K.Sinha, Muslim Law, Allahabad: Central Law Agency, 6th ed.,2006, p.281. [41] .Shayara Bano v. Union of India And Ors p.167 [42]. Supra note, 17 at 147. [43]. AIR 1985 SC 945. [44] . Shayara Bano v. Union of India And Ors [45]. Smith, Donald Eugene. India as a Secular State. London: Princeton University Press, 1963, p.105. [46]. S.A.Kader, Muslim Law and the constitution, Eastern Law House, Kolkata,3rd ed.,2016,p.1 [47] .The Muslim Women(Protection of Rights on Marriage) Act, 2019 ACT NO. 20 OF 2019, See the Preamble of the Act which is to protect the rights of married Muslim women and to prohibit divorce by pronouncing talaq by their husbands and to provide for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto. [48].Section 3 of the Muslim Women(Protection of Rights on Marriage) Act, 2019 [49] Article 81. The court shall summon the spouses and attempt reconciliation. If the husband deliberately abstains, this will be deemed to be withdrawal of the petition. If the wife abstains, the court will notify her that if she does not present herself the petition may be decided in her absence. If the husband has fraudulently given the wrong address for the wife, he may be prosecuted at her instance. [50] .Article 83. [51] Law on Talaq 1935 Judicial Proclamation No.4 of 1035. [52] .Article 89 [53] . Article 1 of Code of Personal Status 1959 Law 188 of 1959 as amended by Law 90 of 1987 [54] Article 4 [55] . NilabatiBehrav.The state of Orissa, AIR 1993 SC 1960; Maneka Gandhi v.Union of India, AIR 1978 SC 597; Jolly George Verghese v. Bank of Cochin, AIR 1980 SC 470; People‟s Union for Civil Liberties v.Union of India, AIR 1997 SC 1203; Vishakav. The state of Rajasthan, AIR 1997 SC 3011; Vineet Narain.Union of India, AIR 1998 SC 889; Githa Hariharan v.Reserve Bank of India, AIR 1999 SC 1149; Chairman Railway Board v. Chandrima Das, AIR 2000 SC 988; Municipal Corporation of Delhi v. Female Workers (Muster Roll), AIR 2000 SC 1274; Dwarka Prasad Agarwal.v BD Agarwala, AIR 2003 SC 2686; Suman Sood v. the State of Rajasthan, AIR 2007 SC 2774; Anuj Garg v.Hotel Association of India, AIR 2008 SC 663. [56] . AIR 1952 Bom 84 [57] M.Mohammed Abbas v. The Chief Secretary, Government of Tamil Nadu, AIR 2015 Mad.237. [58]. Sec.5 (i) of Hindu Marriage Act, 1955, Sec.60 (2) of Indian Christian Marriage Act, 1872 and Sec.4 (i) of the Special Marriage Act, 1954 [59]. Sec.498 of Indian Penal Code, 1862 [60]. Sharaya Bano v. Union of India, AIR 2017 SC 4609 [61] . Ahmedabad Women’s Action Group v. Union of India (AIR 1997, 3 SCC 573). [62]. 2003 (8) SCC 369. [63]. Decided on 9 February 2015. [64] . The law governing the maintenance of Hindu women are Sec.24 and Sec.25 of Hindu Marriage Act, 1955, Sec.18 to Sec.28 of Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act, 1956; for the Christian community-Sec. 36 to Sec.38of Indian Divorce Act, 1861; [65]. AIR 1985 SC 945. [66]. Section 127 deals with the alteration of the Maintenance in certain circumstances. Section 127 (3) (b) says that.— (3) Where an order has been made under section 125 in favour of a woman who has been divorced by or has obtained a divorce from, her husband, the Magistrate shall, if he is satisfied that—(b) the woman has been divorced by her husband and that she has received, whether before or after the date of the said order, the whole of the sum which, under any customary or personal law applicable to the parties, was payable on such divorce, cancel such order,— (i) in the case where such sum was paid before such order, from the date on which such order was made: (ii) in any other case, from the date of expiry of the period, if any, for which maintenance has been paid by the husband to the woman; [67]. Section 3-Mahr or other properties of Muslim woman to be given to her at the time of divorce. (1) Notwithstanding anything contained in any other law for the time being in force, a divorced woman shall be entitled to (a) a reasonable and fair provision and maintenance to be made and paid to her within the iddat period by her former husband; (b) where she maintains the children born to her before or after her divorce, a reasonable and fair provision and maintenance to be made and paid by her former husband for two years from the respective dates of birth of such children; (c) an amount equal to the sum of mahr or dower agreed to be paid to her at the time of her marriage or at any time thereafter according to Muslim law, and (d) all the properties given to her before or at the time of marriage or after her marriage by her relatives or friends or the husband or any relatives of the husband or his friends. [68]. The Muslim Personal Law Board emphasise maintenance under the following works1. The Turjuman al-Quran by Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, translated into English by Dr. Syed Abdul Latif; 2. Persian Translation of the Quran by Shah Waliullah Dahlavi; 3. Al-Manar Commentary on the Quran (Arabic); 4. Al-Isaba by Ibne Hajar Asqualani [Part-2]; SiyarAlam-in-Nubla by Shamsuddin Mohd. Bin Ahmed BinUsman Az-Zahbi; 5. Al-MaratuBayn Al-FiqhaWa Al Qanun by Dr. Mustafa As- Sabai; 6. Al-Jamil ahkam-il Al-Quran by Abu Abdullah Mohammad Bin Ahmed Al Ansari Al-Qurtubi; 7. Commentary on the Quran by Baidavi (Arabic); 8. Rooh-ul-Bayan (Arabic) by Ismail HaqqiAffendi; 9. Al Muhalla by Ibne Hazm (Arabic); 10. Al-Ahwalus Shakhsiah (the Personal Law) by Mohammad abuZuhraDarulFikrul Arabi. [69]. Article 14, Article 15 and Article 21 of the Constitution of India respectively deals with the Equality Clause, Non-discrimination Clause and Life & Liberty Clause. [70] . AIR 2017 SC 4609 [71] .State of Punjab v. Khan Chand, (1974)1 SCC 549. [72] . Om Kumar v. Union of India, (2001) 2 SCC 386 [73] . Dr Subramanian Swamy v. Director, Central Bureau of Investigation, (2014) 8 SCC 682; Dr Subramanian Swamy v. Director, CentralBureau of Investigation, (2005) 2 SCC 317. [74] . Commissioner of Police v. Acharya Jagdishwarananda Avadhuta, 2004 (12) SCC 770 [75] . Khoday Distilleries Ltd. v. State ofKarnataka[(1996) 10 SCC 304; Indian ExpressNewspapers (Bombay) (P)Ltd. v. Union of India [(1985) 1SCC 641 : 1985 SCC (Tax)121]; Sharma Transport v. State of A.P. [(2002) 2 SCC 188]; State of Bihar v. Bihar Distillery Ltd., (1997) 2 SCC 453; State of M.P. v. Rakesh Kohli, (2012) 6 SCC 312; Rajbala v. State of Haryana &Ors., (2016) 2 SCC 445; Binoy Viswam v. Union of India, (2017) 7 SCC 59 [76] . Shamim Ara v. the State of U.P., (2002) 7 SCC 518, [77] . Article 44: The State shall Endeavour to secure for the citizen a uniform civil code throughout the territory of India. [78].S In Md. Ahmed Khan v.Shah Bano Begum, AIR 1985 SC 945, Ms. Jrdan Diengdeb v.S.S. Chopra AIR 1985 SC 945 and also in Sarla Mudgal v. Union of India, AIR 1995 SC 1531and in many other similar cases the Supreme Court of India raised the voice against the non-implementation of the Uniform Civil Code. [79] . (1995)3SCC 635. [80] . AIR 2003 SC 2902. [81] .AIR 2006 SC 1158. [82]. Mary Sonia Zachariah vs Union Of India (UOI) And Ors.II (1995) DMC 27

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