The Goa Civil Code by Ishita Jaiswal @Lexicliq

The Directive Principle of State Policy of Uniform Civil Code is found in Article 44 of the Indian Constitution. It states that the government should take steps to establish a standard civil code that applies to all Indian citizens.

However, there is no definition of “uniform civil code” in Article 44. The ‘uniform civil code’ can be characterised as a set of laws that govern all citizens of India, regardless of religion, in matters of personal law relating to marriage and property. It is a secular code that is not guided by any religious convictions. It tries to keep personal laws distinct from religious laws.

In India, Goa is the only state with a Uniform Civil Code. Goa used to be a Portuguese colony. The Portuguese Civil Code was applied there. In 1961, the Goa Daman & Diu Administration Act made Goa a part of India. In 1867, the Portuguese Parliament approved the Civil Code. It was approved on the provision that required adjustments could be made at any moment.

The Goa Civil Code, commonly known as Goa Family Law, is an unified civil law that applies to all Goa inhabitants. The following are some of the Code’s most important provisions:

Marriage is a civil contract, according to the Goa Civil Code.

Everything owned by the husband and wife before – and after – marriage becomes common property after marriage, and the spouse is entitled to half of that common property in the event of divorce. In such instances, the Code allows for antenuptial agreements. In the event of a divorce, such agreements may specify a different asset allocation. Such agreements are regarded as final and irreversible.
Both boys and girls have equal property rights.

Parents do not have the right to completely disinherit their children. Half of the property must be passed on to the children as a minimum requirement.

The following facts can be used to answer the question of whether the Goa Civil Code is applied uniformly:

Hindu men have the right to polygamy under certain situations, according to the Codes of Usages and Customs of Gentile Hindus of Goa, Daman, and Diu.

Divorce is only permissible in Hindus if the wife commits adultery, according to the Gentile Hindu Codes of Usages and Customs.

Bigamy is also permitted if the first wife fails to deliver any kid until she reaches the age of twenty-five, and if the second wife fails to deliver any child until she reaches the age of twenty-five.

The first wife’s failure to deliver a male kid until she is thirty years old.

If a Muslim man’s marriage is recorded under the Code, he cannot engage in polygamy.

Adoption inequity and the rights of illegitimate children.

After obtaining approval from the Civil Registrar’s office, Catholic Christians can marry in the Church. Non-Catholics, on the other hand, can only register their marriage at the Civil Registrar’s office.

The foregoing facts about the Code demonstrate that it contains several exceptions to itself, indicating that it is not a uniform code in the true sense. There are some exceptions to the monogamy rule. Illegitimate children’s rights are similarly unequal when compared to legitimate children’s. The treatment of Catholic and non-Catholic marriages is likewise different. This demonstrates that it is not applied uniformly to all of the country’s citizens. This Code contains numerous flaws.

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