To get its woman-friendly divorce bill passed in Parliament, the government is likely to accept the Opposition demand of giving the wife and children a clearly defined share in the husband’s immovable residential property in case of a split.
The demand — first raised by the BJP’s Arun Jaitley — was on Wednesday backed by MPs cutting across party lines, including from the Congress.
The government is also set to retain the mandatory six-month cooling-off period, which the bill had proposed to do away with in case of mutual consent divorce.
Sensing the mood of the House, law minister Salman Khurshid postponed his reply to the Marriage Laws (Amendment) Bill. He will now seek the PM’s approval on major amendments sought by the Opposition.
“... It appears the wording, with a bit of tightening, might be acceptable to the Opposition and other parties,” he said.
Jaitley had cautioned the government against the provision that sought to introduce irretrievable breakdown of marriage as a ground for divorce. “If you put irretrievable breakdown without a financial support system as a ground, women will suffer, since courts give conventional and conservative maintenance amounts,” he had said.