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Hindu marriage bill tabled in Pakistan’s national assembly

The bill proposes to allow separated individuals to wed and also gives a widow the right to marry again after six months of her husband’s death

world Updated: Aug 18, 2016 14:03 IST
Pakistan's Hindu Marriage bill,National Assembly,Hindus in Pakistan
A Pakistani Hindu bride (R) and a groom attend a mass wedding ceremony in Karachi on January 24, 2016. (AFP)

The much-debated Hindu marriage bill has been tabled in Pakistan’s national assembly.

Member of the national assembly Ramesh Lal, one of the bill’s movers, said on Wednesday it took around 10 months for a house panel to clear the bill and another six months for its report to be tabled in the house.

“The delay was possibly because of extraordinary debates and discussion around the bill, but at least now the government should consider tabling it in the house in the next session,” Dawn online quoted Lal as saying.

The bill was approved by the standing committee on February 8, and has received support from the Hindu community and liberals.

However, some of the more religious members of the Hindu community have expressed strong reservations regarding the bill’s contents, including allowing separated individuals to remarry.

It also gives a Hindu widow the right to remarry, of her own will and consent, six months after her husband’s death.

The cases of abduction of married Hindu women will stop once the bill is enacted, Dawn online reported.

The law would give the Hindu community proof of marriage in the form of a shadiparat, similar to a Muslim nikahnama.

Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan have consented to the federal government formulating a Hindu marriage law that they would then adopt. Sindh has drawn its own Hindu marriage registration law.

First Published: Aug 18, 2016 14:03 IST