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Misunderstanding about secularism in India (an old post)

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Misunderstanding about secularism in India (an old post) Empty Misunderstanding about secularism in India (an old post)

Post by Seva Lamberdar Tue Apr 04, 2023 11:51 am

It seems the Indian public and politicians don’t have a clear idea about secularism. Even though some of them might have talked about implementing a Uniform Civil Code or UCC (one law for everyone in the country), there seems to be quite a confusion regarding the word “secularism” and the nature of a secular country, especially in relation to India.

While the traditional meaning of secularism reflects the separation of church and state, there is much ambiguity in defining and understanding “church” and “state” when it comes to practicing and implementing secularism. Thus even in India, where there are several religion based legal systems officially in practice and the Govt. grants benefits in education and jobs on the basis of caste, the word “secular” for India is used proudly and officially by everyone including the Govt., public and politicians.

Perhaps there is a kind of misguided charm and fancy in using the word “secular” even though it might not be applicable. Consider for example the Indian constitutional Amendment 42 (April 1, 1977), passed during internal emergency by Indira Gandhi, which provides for curtailment of fundamental rights, imposes fundamental duties and changes to the basic structure of the constitution by making India a "Socialist Secular" Republic, in spite of several religion based legal systems officially in use in the country.

What seems to have been ironic at that time that neither the ruling party (Congress) nor the opposition parties, including previous Bhartiya Jan Sangh or BJS (forerunner to the present Bhartiya Janata Party or BJP), realized the inherent contradiction and folly in using “secular” for India in the presence of religious laws. Moreover, many high officials from the BJP (party succeeding the BJS) still talk and write about Jinnah as a great secularist, even though Jinnah sought the division of India and creation of a country for himself and his community (i.e. Pakistan for Muslims) on the basis of religion where the official legal system would also be based on religion.

Needless to say, the use of the word “secular” for India is erroneous, unnecessary and totally negated by a lack of a non-religious UCC in the country. Moreover, when there are problems in the country arising mostly due to multiple religious legal systems (or the lack of UCC), people and some politicians tend to blame India’s secularism instead of a lack of UCC without realizing that India is not really secular because of multiple religious laws in the country.

by: Dr. Subhash C. Sharma
(hubpages - dated Jan. 27, 2011):  
https://creative.sulekha.com/misunderstanding-about-secularism-in-india_595225_blog
Seva Lamberdar
Seva Lamberdar

Posts : 6572
Join date : 2012-11-29

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1bYp0igbxHcmg1G1J-qw0VUBSn7Fu

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Misunderstanding about secularism in India (an old post) Empty Re: Misunderstanding about secularism in India (an old post)

Post by Seva Lamberdar Tue Apr 04, 2023 11:53 am

India urgently needs the implementation of uniform civil code (UCC: one law for all, irrespective of religion, gender, caste and race) while replacing and getting rid of separate religious laws officially in use currently for different communities (such as Hindu law for Hindus, Sharia or Muslim law for Muslims, Canon / Christian law for Christians, Parsi law for Zoroastrians, and so on), which will make India a truly secular nation where everyone is guaranteed equal justice under the law no matter what the religion or gender etc.
Seva Lamberdar
Seva Lamberdar

Posts : 6572
Join date : 2012-11-29

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1bYp0igbxHcmg1G1J-qw0VUBSn7Fu

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