registration to become compulsory: Supreme Court
IN India would now need to be registered by people of all
religions and in all states as per a Supreme Court order,
on Thursday (October 25).
A Supreme Court Bench headed by Justice Arijit Pasayat, directed
all states and union territories to come up with a proper
legislation within three months making registration of marriages
The Bench has also asked the states and Union territories
to file a compliance report along with a deadline after the
deadline of three months.
Compulsory registration of marriages in India, experts opine
is the need of the hour and would go a great way in reducing
the crime against women, particularly it would check the cases
of Non-resident Indians (NRIs) duping Indian girls.
Supreme Court Lawyer Vikas Upadhyaya, while talking to merinews,
said that this judgement would prove very beneficial in cases
where NRIs dupe the local women.
He said that without proper documentation it is very difficult
to prove the marriage in courts abroad.
Many of times Indian women are forced to live like domestic
helps as they do not have the legal documents to prove that
they have been tricked.
“Registering the marriages will help in cases of bigamy also
as the men and women, both will have certificates to prove
their point”, said Upadhyaya.
It is to be noted that a large number of Indian girls, particularly
in Punjab and other north Indian states are quite eager to
marry outside and migrate to foreign shores. However, there
have been an increasing number of cases in which NRI men and
even women have abandoned Indian spouses and left them in
The Nation Commission for Women (NRIs) in order to push for
making marriage registration a compulsory step had proposed
the draft bill ‘Compulsory Registration of Marriage Act 2005’.
In this act the commission has recommended for the enactment
of a uniform law relating to marriages, providing for compulsory
registration of marriages.
The aim of the law was preventing child marriages and also
polygamy in the society and the Bill was prepared cutting
across religion and region.
Welcoming the decision of the Supreme Court, Pallavi Sharma,
a psychologist, who has worked with a number of women with
failed marriages with NRIs, said that it is necessary that
the marriages are registered and the hapless girls have some
proof in their hands.
She recalled several incidences where women married by NRIs
were abandoned even before they could go abroad, after a short
honeymoon in India. In several cases, she said women, who
managed to go abroad were beaten, brutalised, harassed and
mistreated, which forced them to escape and seek divorce.
“I hope that the Supreme Court decision will have some positive
effect on this problem,” she added.
25 October 2007, Thursday