Islamic laws relaxed by UAE | UPSC – IAS

Islamic laws relaxed by UAE

Islamic laws relaxed by UAE

Historic day for the people of UAE, The UAE Saturday (on November 7)  announced Slew of legal reforms relating to personal freedoms that seek to move the country from harsh interpretation of islamic laws.

Overhaul includes changes in law related to:

  • Honour killings
  • Alcohol Prohibition
  • Cohabitation  of Unmarried couples
  • Divorce and succession.

There is speculation of most probable reason for this changes is the expo which was expected to held from october 2020 to march 2021 now it is scheduled from october 2021 to march 2022 due to covid-pandemic. It is expected that more than 2.5 crores visitors from the world going to visit the expo.

Honour killings

  • Previously, under “honour Killings”, male relatives could evade prosecution or lighter sentence for assaulting women who purportedly brought “dishonour” to the family  by acts such as disobeying religious scriptures or promiscuity.
  • Such incidents would be treated as similar to any other assault.

Consumption of alcohol

  • Drinking alcohol has been decriminalised  for those above 21 years of age and penalties for possessing or selling alcoholic beverages without authorised licence in authorised areas have been removed.
  • Muslims who, had been barred for obtaining  licences, would be allowed to drink alcoholic beverages.

Unmarried couples living together

  • Cohabitation of unmarried couples has been made legal for  the first time. Previously, it was illegal for unmarried couples or Unrelated flatmates to share common home in the UAE.
  • Although prosecution in this category had been rare, decriminalisation is meant to attract more people to move to the country.

Divorce And succession

  • Major change for couples who married in their home country but want to get a divorce in the UAE, laws of the country where marriage took place would apply.
  • Earlier Sharia laws of UAE was in the functioning , this is a breather for the married couples.
  • As regards succession, in bitterly fought cases, local courts could apply UAE’s Sharia law to divide assets among family members.
  • Now the law of person’s country will determine how assets would be divided, unless there is written will.

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