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Family law reforms: Change adultery law, repair marital relationship age for both boys, girls at 18 yrs, says government panel

Making note of the spate of honor killings, the panel has actually requested a standalone law to deal with the concern, make authorities and legal protection necessary for such couples and ensure penalty for those involved in khap choice.

Amending the out-of-date adultery law based upon the presumption of partner being the property of the hubby, introducing a separate legislation for dealing with honor killings and eliminating the gender discrimination intrinsic in laws that state a lower legal age of marriage for a woman these are a few of the family law reforms recommended by the government-appointed top-level panel.

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The report of the committee, which has also requested a restriction on triple talaq and polygamy, will be put before the Supreme Court which is hearing a petition filed by an Uttarakhand-based Muslim woman appealing versus her triple talaq.

The year-old report evaluating the status of women in India, which was never made public, also recommends a variety of other reforms.

In its review of women and household laws with regard to marriage, divorce, custody, inheritance and succession, the 14-member panel has suggested reforms to undo the implicit gender prejudices in the personal laws for Hindus, Muslims and Christians as also in other legislation on the concern. The panel points out the suggestions of the 18th law commission to make a case for identifying 18 years as the age of marriage for both sexes. Proposes standalone law to deal with honor killings Taking note of the wave of honor killings, the panel has Requested a standalone law to deal with the issue, make police and legal defense necessary for such couples and ensure penalty for those involved in khap choices that result in such killings. Furthermore, it has stated that the current practice of setting up 30-day public notifications under the Special Marriages Act need to be done away with as it might put young couples marrying against their parent’s approval at threat.

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