Amend Hindu Marriage Act to ban same-gotra marriages: Khaps
Rapped by the Supreme Court for interfering in consensual marriages of adults, several khaps on Sunday gathered at Meham Chaubisi in Rohtak and demanded amendment in Hindu Marriage Act to ban same-gotra (clan) and same-village marriages.
In a mahapanchayat chaired by Meham Chaubisi convener Shamsher Kharkara, the khaps said wrong marriage laws giving freedom to adults have become a pain for every parent in the state.
“The youth has taken up the wrong path and our law is protecting it. Brothers and sisters are marrying each other without taking care of gotra or village. It’s high time to amend the law to make sure our children do not take the wrong step. The criminal laws should be coherent with our customary laws,” Kharkara said.
Former MLA Sukhbir Farmana suggested that a chapter on marriage should be included in the syllabus of school students, which should inform them about whom they can and cannot marry.
“Just like this government has included yoga and Gita in school syllabus, it needs to add a chapter on marriage as well. The students should be informed during childhood only that they cannot marry in same gotra or within same village, so they don’t end up defying customs when they grow old,” he said.
Another speaker Ramchandra Jangra said if people started marrying in same gotra, their children will be at risk of genetic disorders.
In its recent order, the Supreme Court had rapped khap panchayats for obstructing the marriages of two adults. In view of the order, the khaps on Sunday said they will not impose any fine on anyone defying their orders, “but expect the entire state to follow them.”
Among the other decisions taken by the khaps at Sunday’s mahapanchayat was to write to government to ban porn on internet. “The content on TV is regulated, but youth is free to watch obscene videos on internet. This must stop,” said Kharkara.
A decision to ban loud DJs during weddings and other functions was also taken.
The Khaps also proposed and agreed on reducing mourning period after someone’s death from 13 days to seven days.
It also asked people to stop the practice of organising feasts on someone’s death. “A family is already in loss on death of their loved one. The society must not put pressure on it to organise feast as well,” the khaps said.