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Hooda Says Khap Panchayats Cannot Take Law Into Their Hands

After the praise showered by his Congress party colleague Navin Jindal on Khap panchayats, Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda on Tuesday  said these caste councils do not have legal sanctity and his government would
PTI May 11, 2010 20:07 IST
PTI

After the praise showered by his Congress party colleague Navin Jindal on Khap panchayats, Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda on Tuesday  said these caste councils do not have legal sanctity and his government would not allow them to take law into their hands.

"Khap panchayats don't have any legal sanctity. They are like an informal social organisation like NGOs.... As far as Haryana government is concerned, if somebody does anything good for social cause, we welcome that but nobody will be allowed to take law into their hands," he told reporters in New Delhi.

Hooda's statement comes after Kurukshetra MP Navin Jindal praised the works of these caste councils and extended support to their demand to amend the Hindu Marriage Act to prohibit same sub-caste (gotra) marriages.

Former Haryana Chief Minister and opposition Indian National Lok Dal chief Om Prakash Chautala has also supported the demand of the Khap panchayats.

Hooda said the the Khap Panchayats "have their own views. Individuals have their own views and we have our own."

The caste councils which function as kangaroo courts have gained notoriety for their diktats against couples who marry against societal norms. 

Jindal, considered as a forward looking young generation Congress leader, attended a Khap mahapanchayat in Kaithal, Haryana, and said that he would vigorously take up the issues raised by them with the Congress high command and the party government in the state. PTI