Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma has announced that his government plans to introduce a bill to ban polygamy in the state. The announcement was made during a meeting with the State Women’s Commission on Monday.
Polygamy, the practice of marrying more than one spouse, is still prevalent in many parts of India. The proposed legislation aims to address this issue and promote gender equality in Assam.
Chief Minister Sarma said that the bill would be introduced in the next session of the Assam Legislative Assembly. He also revealed that an expert panel would be formed to study the issue and make recommendations on the best way to implement the proposed ban.
The expert panel will be comprised of legal and social experts, as well as representatives from women’s organisations and civil society groups. They will be tasked with examining the socio-economic implications of polygamy and the best practices from other states and countries that have already implemented such bans.
The Chief Minister said that the proposed legislation would have a significant impact on women’s rights in Assam. He emphasised that the government is committed to promoting gender equality and protecting women’s rights.
“The proposed legislation to ban polygamy is a significant step towards ensuring the dignity and empowerment of women in our state,” said Chief Minister Sarma.
“We are not going towards Uniform Civil Code (UCC) for which a national consensus is required, and the Centre will take the initiative on that,” he said. He also mentioned that the decision will be taken by consensus and not by force
He also added that the government would be conducting awareness campaigns to educate people about the harmful effects of polygamy and the benefits of monogamous relationships.
The move has been widely welcomed by women’s rights groups in the state. They have been calling for a ban on polygamy for years, arguing that it perpetuates gender inequality and is often used to exploit and abuse women.
Assam is not the first state in India to consider a ban on polygamy. Several other states, including Uttar Pradesh and Haryana, have already introduced similar legislation. However, the proposed ban in Assam is expected to have a significant impact given the prevalence of the practice in the state.
Overall, the move to ban polygamy in Assam is seen as a positive step towards promoting gender equality and protecting women’s rights. The expert panel will play a crucial role in ensuring that the legislation is effective and that it addresses the underlying social and economic factors that contribute to the practice of polygamy.