Dr. Arijit Pasayat, J.
1. In this case directions were
given to the States and the Union Territories in the matter of framing
necessary statutes regarding compulsory registration of marriages. By
order dated 14.2.2006 (reported in Seema v. Ashwani Kumar (2006
(2) SCC 578) following directions were given:
(i) The procedure for registration
should be notified by respective States within three months from today.
This can be done by amending the existing rules, if any, or by framing
new rules. However, objections from members of the public shall be
invited before bringing the said rules into force. In this connection,
due publicity shall be given by the States and the matter shall be kept
oven for objections for a period of one month from the date of
advertisement inviting objections. On the expiry of the said period, the
States shall issue appropriate notification bringing the rules into
(ii) The officer appointed under the
said rules of the States shall be duly authorized to register the
marriages. The age, marital status (unmarried, divorcee) shall be
clearly stated. The consequence of non-registration of marriages or for
filing false declaration shall also be provided for in the said rules.
Needless to add that the object of the said rules shall be to carry out
the directions of this Court.
iii) As and when the Central
Government enacts a comprehensive statute, the same shall be placed
before this Court for scrutiny.
(iv) Learned counsel for various
States and Union Territories shall ensure that the directions given
herein are carried out immediately."
2. Subsequently, by order dated
25.10.2007 further directions were given [see: Seema v. Ashwani Kumar
(2008(1) SCC 180)]. Particular reference was made to the earlier
observations to the effect that marriages of all persons who are
citizens of India belonging to various religions should be compulsorily
registered in the respective States and Union Territories where the
marriages have been solemnized.
2 Different States and Union
Territories have placed on record details of the compliance made. When
the matter was taken upon on 28.4.2008, it was stated that four States
namely: Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Kerala and Haryana have already final
rules. So far as the State of Punjab is concerned, it was submitted that
the Bill has been prepared and it is to be placed before the Legislative
Assembly, and that the draft rules have been prepared in the States of
Arunachal Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh. It was stated on behalf of the
Union Territory of Pondicherry that the matter was referred to the
Central Government because the issue of special statutes is concerned.
So far as the State of Uttrakhand is concerned it was stated that the
rules have been framed in the year 2006 and the matter is pending
consideration because of certain suggestions made by the Home Ministry.
So far as the State of Maharashtra
is concerned it was submitted that though with effect from 15.5.1999 a
statute is in place, certain modifications are necessary as the
marriages under the Special Marriage Act are not directly covered. So
far as the State of Sikkim is concerned, it was stated that the rules
have 3 been notified on 9.8.2007 and in the State of Mizoram a statute
has been enacted on 24.2.2007. It is stated that affidavits in this
regard shall be filed. So far as the State of Manipur is concerned, it
is stated that the Bill has already been introduced in the Assembly in
February, 2008. So far as the State of Assam is concerned, it was
submitted that the Bills are under consideration. Learned counsel for
the State of Tamil Nadu stated that he wants to find out whether any
Statute has been introduced on 26.2.2007 and to file additional
affidavit. It was submitted on behalf of the State of Chhatisgarh that
the necessary Statute has been enacted on 20.11.2006. Let all the States
and Union Territories who have not given specific details, file
affidavits within four months from today.
3. List after four months.
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