Assam Muslim

1. Assam cabinet repeals Assam Muslim Marriage & Divorce Registration Act 1935.
2. Decision made during a cabinet meeting chaired by CM Himanta Biswa Sarma.
3. Move seen as progress towards Uniform Civil Code (UCC).

Guwahati, Feb 24: In a significant move, the Assam cabinet has repealed the Assam Muslim Marriage & Divorce Registration Act 1935. The decision, taken during a cabinet meeting chaired by Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, marks a step towards achieving a Uniform Civil Code (UCC).

Addressing the media, cabinet minister Jayanta Mallabarua highlighted the decision’s importance in advancing towards UCC. He explained that all matters concerning Muslim marriages and divorces would now fall under the purview of the Special Marriages Act.

Mallabarua emphasized that the authority for registering Muslim marriages and divorces would shift to the District Commissioner and the District Registrar. Additionally, the 94 Muslim registrars currently operating under the Act will be relieved from their duties, each receiving a one-time compensation of Rs 2 lakh.

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The decision, Mallabarua stated, aims to combat child marriage in the state while modernizing outdated legislation inherited from the British era. He noted instances of underage marriages registered under the repealed Act, underscoring the need for its discontinuation.

In another significant decision, the Assam cabinet included the tribal languages of Mising, Rabha, Karbi, Tiwa, Deori, and Dimasa as mediums of instruction in primary education, aligning with the new National Education Policy’s emphasis on mother tongues.

Furthermore, the communities of Ahoms, Koch Rajbongshis, and Gorkhas were granted protected class status in the Balipara Tribal Block, enabling privileges in land transactions. Additionally, Manipuri was declared an associate official language in Cachar, Karimganj, Hailakandi, and Hojai districts.

Moreover, the cabinet decided to bifurcate the Assam Agricultural University, establishing a new Assam Veterinary and Fishery University.

This new university will comprise the Faculty of Veterinary Sciences in Guwahati’s Khanapara and the College of Fishery Science in Raha, enhancing focus and specialization in veterinary and fishery education.