Review of Laws and Legislative Measures Affecting Women
by National Commission for Women (NCW)

No. 8. Compulsory Registration of Marriages (New Legislation)

Existing Provision

No statue exists

Proposed Amendments by Government

To introduce a legislation for compulsory registration of marriages (under consideration of the Government for more than 15 years) Bill (of 1978) received with the reference.

Suggested Amendments by NCW

  1. The Commission is of the view that for women registration of marriages is a critical issue and will help to prevent child marriages and to ensure minimum age of marriage; to ensure the requirement of consent of the bride to the marriage and to ensure prohibition against polygamy; - to ensure that prior wives receive notice of intended marriage.

  2. The NCW noticed certain lacunae in the Bill (of 1978).

  3. Further, to achieve the objective of the Bill, it could be modeled on the provisions of the Parsee Marriage and Divorce Act, 1936.

  4. To explore the possibility of amending the Births, Deaths and Marriages Registration Act, 1886 in which provision exists for voluntary registration of all marriages.

  5. A suitable amendment to the Act along with a suitable amendment to the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 will serve the purpose.

  6. A pre-requisite is that the existing machinery for registration of births, deaths and marriages should be strengthened (financial implications may e well within reasonable limits.)
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