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Delhi bill on marriage registration sent to Select Committee

PTI 05 Jun 2012, 14:36:16 IST
New Delhi, June 5: A bill providing for mandatory registration of marriages within 60 days of tying the knot was on Monday  referred to a select committee of the assembly by the Delhi Government.

The Delhi Registration of Marriages Bill 2012, which was tabled in Delhi Assembly on Thursday last, has been referred to a select committee after a number of MLAs said it should not be put for voting in a “hurry”.

As per the Bill, all marriages will have to be registered within a period of 60 days from the date of marriage and violation of the provision will invite a fine of Rs 10,000.  LJP MLA Shohaib Iqbal was most vocal in demanding review of the bill by a select committee.

“It is a sensitive issue and government must first send it to the select committee,” he said.

Following demands by a number of MLAs, Revenue Minister A K Walia agreed to concede to the demand.  The Bill is being brought with an aim to prevent child marriages, check bigamy or polygamy, enable widows to claim right on property and to ensure that deserted women get their rights like financial help and custody of children from their estranged husbands.

Officials said all the marriages solemnised in Delhi or marriages solemnised out of Delhi involving a person who normally resides in Delhi will come under purview of the proposed legislation.

The Bill also seeks to make registration of marriages a simple and hassle-free process as presence of either the husband or wife at the designated offices will be enough for it.

In special circumstances, a couple may even authorise their parents for registration of their marriages, provided documentation of the paper work is in order.  

Registration of marriage will take place in the office of the Registrar of Marriages in whose jurisdiction either the husband or wife resides or in whose jurisdiction the marriage is solemnised.

If a marriage is solemnised in a foreign country and if the husband or wife normally resides in Delhi, then such marriage will also have to be registered, as per the draft bill.

The Bill envisages registration of all marriages, be it under Hindu Marriage Act, Special Marriage Act or any other Act.

The Bill has been drafted in line with a Supreme Court directive and the procedures for registration are being simplified as per suggestion of the Home Ministry.