6 conditions to validate your foreign divorce decree in India

Law Misuse, Divorce, Separation

In various judgement and particularly in Y Narasimha Rao and Ors. Vs. Y. Venkata Lakshmi and Anr, Supreme Court (1991)  Hon. Supreme Court has set the conditions to validate a foreign divorce decree in India. These are –

  1. When the divorce is granted based on grounds recognized by Indian law – Cruelty / Desertion / Adultery etc. are some of the valid grounds of divorce in India. So any divorce granted on any of these grounds by a foreign court will be valid in India too.
  2. When provisions of Indian law are not breached – If the marriage or related divorce procedure follows Indian laws, a foreign divorce decree will be valid in India. For example, Indian Muslim Laws does not recognize Mutha Marriage (marriage of a short duration) and hence a divorce decree for this kind of marriage is not valid in India.
  3. Decree pronounced by a court with right jurisdiction–This means that the court is either at a place where the said marriage was solemnized or where the parties had lived last as husband and wife or where the respondent lived. One cannot travel to a foreign country to obtain divorce and expect that to be valid in India.
  4. Decree that followed Principles of Natural Justice – The decree should have been obtained after a fair process of trial with both parties equally represented. This makes ex parte decrees from foreign courts invalid in India.
  5. When the divorce was decided on merits of the case – This is possible when both parties are equally represented and evidences of both parties were presented and discussed in the court.
  6. The decree was not obtained by fraud / coercion – Any decree obtained through fraud / coercion is not valid in India.

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Special Thanks – Shonee Kapoor

“Consensual sex on promise of marriage, is not rape” argues a Supreme Court Lawyer

Consensual Sex

Now an advocate practicing in Indian Supreme Court has challenged the validity of “Sex on promise of marriage” as being called rape in India criminal justice system. Not only this, he has challenged this as he said this crime is invented by judges and does not exist in Indian Penal Code, 1860 and is completely unconstitutional.

Avct. K V Dhananjay had written a letter in 2015 to the then Law Minister Mr. Sadanada Gowda seeking a complete revoking of all such convictions in the past. In this article published on Legally India website Advct. Dhananjay claimed that he had waited for one year before publishing his letter as he thought the law minister would take suitable action towards this but he didn’t.

Dhananjay stated in his letter that while putting his points together he had ignored the amendments to Indian Penal Code, 1860 made in 2013. He stated that in last decade there was a sudden surge in such rape cases where sex between two consenting adults were termed as rape when the marriage did not take place at a later point in time. He stated that this was purely judge invented rape that is against the basic tenets of IPC or constitution.

The SC Advocate argued that under section 375 of IPC, rape is a crime committed against the “will” or “consent” of a woman. The punishment for rape is given in section 376 of IPC. He argued that we needed to first understand the crime per se before delving into the branches of the crime. He explained that since pre-marital sex is not a custom or accepted social norm anywhere in Indian culture this sex has no sanction in Indian tradition.

He argued that criminal laws of the land must be made by our parliament and NOT by individual judges who had invented this theory of rape.

Advct. Dhananjay’s main arguments in justification of this are the following –

  1. The intended audience for Criminal laws are lay people and the interpretation to this is not open to change by any advocate or judge. Thus if the law stated something in original statute, it could not be interpreted differently by anyone later. He said, that the assumption that lawmakers would have made a mistake while drafting a law is not acceptable.
  2. He argued that if there exists a doubt in the interpretation of a law, the law needs to be interpreted in a manner to favour the accused because a dubious or unclear law can’t be used against any person to punish him / her.
  3. Advct. Dhananjay also argued that morality and law are two different aspects in our life and no judge can punish one for an immoral act without the sanction in law.
  4. He said, no provision in the penal statute should be so read as to make a host of other provisions to loosen all their meaning.
  5. He argued that in terms of the definition of rape that is mentioned in IPC 375 (fourth point) the legislature only wanted to punish men who were not husbands but made the women believe that they were husbands. Legislature never wanted to punish someone who were not a husband but had consented to be a husband in future.

Advct. Dhananjay argues that IPC 375 does not criminalize the offence of “sex on promise of marriage” as rape at all and all judges including many supreme court judges had been wrongfully and illegally convicting innocent boys of a serious crime like rape.

He examined different cases where consensual-intercourse-became-rape-afterwards and found that judges took three broad tests to determine such cases –

  1. Man did not ever have any intention to marry the girl at the time of intercourse
  2. The girl had truly believed that she would get married to the man afterwards
  3. The man became deceptive later and refused to marry the girl

At this juncture he explained the meaning of ‘consent’ in IPC. He explained that IPC says

==========================================================================

“consent may not be free if there is a misconception of “fact” on the part of the person giving consent”. So he said – and I quote him here – “if a man does not intend to marry a girl and yet, asks her to have intercourse with him by promising to marry her and if the girl believes him then and agrees to an intercourse, she was under a misconception of fact.”

===========================================================================

He said that it is unsatisfactory reasoning that (and I quote him again) –

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

when the marriage does not take place in the future as promised in such a case, the fact that it does not take place will show that the girl was under a misconception of fact and the intercourse gets established as a rape at that point of the marriage not taking place in the future.”

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

He explained the term ‘Consent’ as described in section 90 of IPC and showed that to understand the definition of ‘consent’ as described in IPC 90 one needs to understand ‘General Exceptions’ marked in IPC Section 6. It says, “any penal provision in the IPC must be understood with reference to the chapter ‘General Exceptions”.

He argues that even though the IPC 375 definition never states that a child under the age of 7 years can’t commit rape but every law must be understood in light of ‘general exceptions’ that says nothing committed by a child under the age of seven years will be considered as a crime. This need not be repeated in every law, it says.

Similarly he gives another example of a police officer A arresting a suspect B in a crime without any warrant. A is not guilty of any offence as he is duty bound to do it.

However, in his argument he pointed out that ‘General Exception’ section of IPC needs to be consulted only when an act constitutes a crime, NOT before that. But in Consensual-intercourse-becomes-rape-afterwards theory does not constitute the offence as defined in IPC in first place. He said, that our judges has created this new crime out of nothing but completely based on exceptions.

Now he further explained that section 90 of IPC that defines the term ‘Consent’ is not an exception but an ‘explanation’. He then took example from original IPC notes and showed that the notes in IPC emphasized that ‘criminal quality of any act which is described by a word here explained, must depend on the definition in which it occurs’. So one needs to look at the original definition of the crime in IPC 375 rather than in “General Exception” in IPC 90 or IPC 6.

He explained further with an example of an adult woman who knows nothing about sex or intercourse visits a doctor and the doctor tells her that in order to treat her, he needed to have intercourse with her and gets her consent. This is “Misinterpretation of the fact” per IPC 90 because the woman misinterprets the act of intercourse as something else. However in cases of Consensual-intercourse-becomes-rape-afterwards the girl knows what intercourse is and thus does not constitute the crime at all.

He gave an equally beautiful example to explain how a sexual act can become rape when it is not rape in reality. He said that if a man has grey hair and looks unattractive and decides to color his hair black. If a girl agrees to have sex with him by seeing him in black hair and later discovers that he in fact had grey hair, IPC 375 does not make that a crime of ‘rape’. However, IPC 90 makes that rape as it was done by deception.

He thus stated that if IPC 90 is taken to define rape, IPC 375 will be a mockery of all known principles of interpretation.

In the end he explained with examples of laws from other countries and requested Indian govt. to recall all such punishments and uphold the sanctity of the IPC.

***

Here is the funding details of Indira Jaisingh’s NGO Lawyer’s Collective (LCI)

[Tracking the money trail is a new series that will track the money trail of feminist NGOs. All NGO that receive Foreign Funds submit FCRA return with Ministry of Home Affairs in a format called FC-6 forms. The data is available online and can be checked from here

All such funding details of feminist NGOs can be seen here]

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Lawyers' Collective, Indira Jaisingh

A recent report of former Addl. Solicitor General of India, Ms. Indira Jaisingh’s NGO Lawyers’ Collective (LCI) receiving notice from Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) for utilizing foreign funds differently than for the purposes for which these were received has sparked a controversy. Here’s the details of their funding received from 2006 –

Donor wise funding to Lawyers Collective

Donor wise details to LCI

Country wise donation –

Foreign Funding details of Lawyers Collective

Country wise yearly donation to LCI

Even though Funds raised through Indian groups is second highest in the above list from the first table we come to know that these Indian groups were only Indian wings of different foreign establishments like Ford Foundation and SIDA.

Country Wise Funding to Lawyers Collective since 2006

Country wise share of donation to LCI since 2006

LCI Funding

Funding of LCI

If we look at the purpose for which this funds was received by LCI, we will find the following –

Ford Foundation (Total amount donated 6.1 crore)–

  • Women Empowerment
  • Awareness about AIDS/ Treatment and rehabilitation of persons affected by AIDS
  • Awareness Camp / Seminar / Workshop / Meeting / Conferences

Swedish organization SIDA’s India wing has given ~4.7 crore Rupees for AIDS awareness.

US organization Levi Strauss Foundation has donated 4.6 crore since 2009 towards Awareness Camps / Seminars / Meetings in general and for AIDS.

Almost the whole funding of 3.9 crore from Swiss firm Foundation Open Society Institute was for seminars and awareness camps.

US organization Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids Action Funds has given Rs. 2.3 crore for awareness camps, seminars etc between 2008-2012.

World Health Organization (WHO) funds was for Awareness on AIDS and seminars and conferences.

A point to note that some of these donors were also found funding NGOs in different other sectors and inhibiting projects designed for India’s growth. Ford Foundation was found to have funded environmental group Greenpeace that has worked in the past to stall developmental projects by creating and inciting violence / protests in those areas.

As this India Today report suggests, the main issues with LCI funding were in the areas of –

  1. Paying volunteers for organizing dharnas
  2. Receiving foreign money as remuneration while Indira Jaisingh was holding a govt. post
  3. Sending foreign donations outside India
  4. Spending foreign money to lobby with parliamentarians

According to the news–

“The utilization of Foreign Contribution for advocacy indulging in lobbying with MPs and thereby influencing the political process and parliamentary institutions is in clear violation of the letter and spirit of the FCRA Act. Section 3 of the FCRA clearly prohibits acceptance of foreign contribution by any member of any party so that parliamentary institutions are not influenced in any manner.”

In a latest release on their website, LCI has expressed anger and outrage over leak of this information and denied the allegations.

Ironically Indira Jaisingh said in 1998 that NGOs that accept foreign funding develops vested interest –

This reveals that Jai Singh does not believe in what she preaches. When the funding is in crores this can happen anytime.

Other news that will concern you –

  1. Anand Grover (husband of Indira Jaisingh and a trustee of LC) was the defense advocate for Yakub Memon and criticized India hanging Yakub
  2. LC is representing Gujrat based Social Activist Teesta Seetalvad whose NGO is facing a CBI inquiry on FCRA violations (Newslink)
  3. Ford Foundation was found funding other social and environmental NGOs that obstruct projects for India’s growth (Link)

***

Related

  1. Funding Details of Ranjana Kumari’s NGO Centre for Social Research
  2. Funding details of Khurshid Anwar’s NGO – ISD
  3. Funding details of Jagori – Force behind #OneBillionRising Campaign
  4. Funding of Flavia Agnes’ NGO Majlis

This is why dowry should be legal in Indian marriages

Dowry, matrimonial, arranged marriage, Indian wedding

I know all of you might be shocked by the title, after all these years of anti-dowry movement and understanding the ill-effects of dowry in marriages this is surely a shocker for everyone. I have stopped being politically correct and started exposing the social hypocrisy in the name of women empowerment and hence this article.

No, I am neither talking about those honey wrapped definition of dowry in arranged marriages that says – Dowry is a property right given to the daughters on marriages by their parents nor the popular politically correct MRA definition that it is actually stridhan that is given to the wife but termed as dowry per her convenience later.

At the outset, let me clarify that I no longer consider matrimonial relation as a holy relationship. The popular Hindu belief that says we have tied our knot in heaven and our relation is actually immortal. Even though Indian marriages still have Saat Phera with fire or Agnidev as a witness. This may be legally accepted procedure of Hindu Marriage but our religious interference ends there. After this ritual everything that sustain in an Indian marriage is legal. If it was not, then our divorce proceedings would have been conducted with Agnidev as witness and we taking reverse phera around Him to untie the wedlock as the pioneer of Indian MRM Mr. Radhikanath Mallick once commented.

Since Indian marriage is only a legal ritual, let’s talk about acceptable marriage per Hindu marriage laws and how this relationship transpires to Indian Marriages.

Today, we may not have a pre-nup agreement valid in Indian Marriages but WCD ministry is creating a pre-nup to ensure alimony for the wife. To top it all WCD minister is also trying to give single mothers tax benefits. This is on top of existing sections for women empowerment to claim maintenance and alimony (mind it, a man does not get tax benefit on the income paid to wife as maintenance or alimony) being a part in divorces including the mutual consent (MCD) ones. This is further established by judgements from various courts allowing maintenance to working wives under the pretext of maintaining their living standards at the same level as that when they were married.

To argue in favour of this condition of ensuring maintenance or financial security for the wife, feminists have been giving reasons including those from Saptapadi (matrimonial vows taken by the couple in an Indian wedding). But, whenever it came to reminding women of their marriage vows everybody became silent. If those marriage vows were observed ever then any adulterous wives should have been punished, any woman going against the husband or not taking care of her family should have also been punished.

Under politically correct definition of a Hindu marriage it is considered a crime to remind women of any of their duties and I am here to break that jinx.

My definition of dowry for the purpose of this article is the definition that is considered a crime in India – “Money or articles other than gifts given by the bride side to the groom’s side in connection of marriage”.

Under legally accepted norms in India any such exchange of money or articles other than gifts is a crime for both sides (even though feminists are trying to make giving dowry as no crime). So in a legally accepted Indian marriage the man gets a house for his family, makes all necessary arrangements and interior done, builds all conveniences for the girl he is going to marry without knowing whether the girl will take care of any of her responsibilities after marriage.

When we look at a girl’s responsibility after marriage we don’t find any and hence it becomes dependent on individual’s perception of responsibility. Some may consider taking care of household work is her responsibility whereas some others may not. Some may consider being faithful to the husband and his family is her responsibility and raising his and only his children is her responsibility but some others may not. And none of these women are actually considered an offender under any section of existing Hindu legal norms.

Read – Indian women have no responsibility in their families

Hindu marriage that is a legal contract (as explained above) is silent about the responsibilities of one party (wife) completely. Whereas it spells out every minute responsibility of the husband. That is why all different laws are made to ensure that the husband never ignores his duties. This however is the cause of all marriage problems.

Considering marriage of an average IT employee middle class Hindu man in his thirties we understand that he is forced to expenses like buying a good flat (Rs. 50 lakh or 5 Million) in a metro city, interior (additional 5-10 lakhs) is the prerequisite of a marriage. So a Hindu boy in his thirties is forced to invest at least 5-6 million before his marriage (any gifts . jewelry given to the bride or family is extra). After marriage he is supposed to take care of the wife completely with no expectation whatsoever from her or her family (as that is considered dowry). So no matter whether the wife is employed or is from a well-to-do family – a man is expected to take care of all his expenses. Under present day conditions existing in India any average two person family in a city will need 20-30 K for somewhat decent living considering the wife does not overspend.

Over and above these expenses are the occasional expenses like her family function, travels and other medical conditions to her or her family members, if applicable. The expenses can reach anywhere upwards 4 lakhs annually. While the husband is forced to meet budgetary expenses for his marriage, the wife comes with no liability for herself. In turn, legally it is considered that the good living conditions that the husband might have provided to her during their marriage is supposed to be continued even after separation and hence he continues to pay her without getting or expecting any of her services.

This in a way clarifies that Indian women are made parasites by the Hindu legal system and with addition of every women empowering family law, WCD ministry is just reinforcing this point. With no protest whatsoever from women, makes the point that they enjoy this situation of unnecessary benefits and want to ride on hard earned income of someone else. This is reinforced by working divorced women claiming alimony from their husbands.

At this outset let me also clarify that Hindu Laws don’t force working women to contribute in their family’s expenses and I have seen many divorces due to the reason husband expected his earning wife to contribute in their family.

So this becomes clear that a woman has no financial liability in a marriage and all liability goes to the man for trying to have a family. So it is completely based on chance for him that his wife takes care of his family, do not have sex outside marriage, or raise his children with proper care and affection. Given the fact that there is no criteria or quality measure for these services and in most modern households these services are often outsourced to maids or ayas (paid by the husband again) the wife becomes complete liability with high cost attached outside the marriage records.

So, if men consider women as parasites or leeches that become obvious. I am sure no one likes this kind of image for oneself and hence the respectable solution to this problem is to consider women as really equal partners in a marriage and making sure of their equal contribution to the marriage. Not only before a Hindu marriage but also after the same in monthly household expenses, in daily workload sharing or otherwise.

Currently this is considered as dowry under Indian law. But if this financial contribution from women is ensured in pre-nupital agreement that the govt is trying to bring, only then women will be treated really equally. Since this will be covered by an agreement (pre-nup) their initial share (after adjusting for depreciation) may be given back to them in case of a divorce or marriage problems. However, monthly family running expenses that are consumed by both may not be shared.

By making dowry a criminal offence, feminists have also blocked chances of many not so good looking or average women from getting married. Today there are increasing number of women who are in their late thirties or early forties and looking for soulmates but not able to get married. Since everyone understand taking or giving dowry is a crime, no one talks about the same; men do not like these women and also get concerned whether these women will ever contribute to their family after marriage in addition to being a liability to them and hence these women never get married.

Many such women, in their late ’30s who were good looking in their prime (but are not so good looking today) told me that they are not able to get married when they contacted me for my second marriage. They had very high expectations about their partners and found no boys meeting their criteria and slowly lost their value in  marriage market. Some of the girls I met will probably never be able to get married and they don’t realize it is because of the feminists’ created high expectations that had ruined their lives. Earlier these women could have got married by giving dowry, today they can’t get married at all. No matter if they are highly earning and have intention to contribute in their family. Who knows they will not raise that contribution as dowry and will send their husband to jail afterwards.

Overall, the dowry menace was not dealt with well by any of our govt. Women can never be empowered by shunning all their responsibilities. Only some good looking women may win but a large number will be losers. It is time for everyone to realize that.

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Dear kids – we failed to save you from the lynch mob

Petition Against Amendment to Juvenile Justice ActDear kids, today with a heavy heart let me confess that we failed to protect you from the lynch mob. Many of you are not born yet, many of you suddenly got your adulthood at premature age of 16 and you may not still know what danger lies ahead.

Many of you are not born yet. Many have suddenly become adults (only to be considered as criminals but for no other rights), we have now officially and legally reduced your childhood. In recent past we could hardly give quality childhood to most of you. Now we have decided to officially rob you of your innocence as we lost to the blood thirsty intolerant mob – thirsty for your blood even before you are born. These are your own parents or family members but they felt this necessary. Ironically only a month back we (me included) fought an intense battle to prove that India is a tolerant nation. I know Aamir is probably laughing at my hypocrisy now as I am going to prove that intolerant India won, and this time with their blood thirst for the young and innocents.

Ironically the ministry that is supposed to safeguard your interests and make sure that your future is secure has decided to give you some harsh treatment for the sake of another portfolio it enjoys, i.e. the grown up women, who are ever innocent than our kids and ever vulnerable from everyone including our kids. So kids you had lost your battle of your rights only because of absence of a ministry solely working for your welfare and probably because you are no vote bank.

I know, those of you who are from well-to-do families don’t bother about this, but this is for the poor and marginalized of you who do not get education, love, care affection of anyone, who are treated badly ever since their birth. As a state we have decided to disown you now. Instead of trying to understand the reasons behind some of you coming in conflict of law, your own minister claimed in parliament, that kids in conflict with law say to police, I quote her here –


“Maybe a very small percentage will go to jail due to this Bill. But it certainly will stop a sixteen-year old from going to a thana saying, ““मैंने झुग्गी को आग लगा दी है, मुझे जेजे में डाल दो, मैंने पचास गाड़ीयां चोरी की है, मुझे जेजे में डाल दो, मैंने अपनी पड़ोसन का बलात्कार कर दिया, मुझे जेजे में डाल दो।” (English in short – I have committed heinous crimes, send me to JJ). [Maneka Gandhi during RS debate on JJ Bill Amendment]


It is indeed everyone’s guess how much the above would be true. Another Hon. Member of Parliament Smt. Anu Aga had to describe the pathetic condition of children homes and expressed concern that once sent there no child would want to revisit those again. Your minister agreed while giving answer to one question, that there is no one to talk in favour of those unfortunate kids, even if they are extremely abused in those juvenile homes.

But dear kids, what your minister said to convince the other members of parliament about the necessity of this bill was clearly visible as a lie to many of us because there is no way that those underprivileged children would know of such a thing like juvenile homes existing. Many of us, who work for human rights in this country was not even aware of our family laws and provisions unless we got a taste of them, and I am talking of most educated, cultured and erudite people of India. Many of us are from India’s premier institutions and working in most prestigious organizations. When we were not knowledgeable about our laws and provisions we don’t understand how illiterate and underprivileged children who are in conflict with law would ever talk like that.

But that was not the only misinformation told in the parliament. The data presented to show that India’s 16 year olds have become most dreaded criminals projected only the number of cases filed and not actual convictions and many parliamentarians have refuted the data and gave real stats. Even media brought that to light later.

Indian Express

Dear kids, as a nation we couldn’t ensure your basic rights. Rights to education, food, shelter. We could not ensure even love and affection to save your childhood, instead we wanted to take revenge on you. We have shown you that eye for an eye mechanism has replaced our attitude towards our kids now. By saying that you will be treated like adults after 16 years of age, we are not saying that you will get other rights like – say,  voting rights, marriage rights, property rights etc; what we are saying we will send you to adult prisons and even though you will not be kept with hardened criminals, you will find the rigor of your early perceived maturity.

We didn’t hesitate to violate our constitution in doing so. The safeguards available to you under Articles 14, 15, 15(3) and 21 are all violated, under the premise of one bad example. It is as if I got severe cold once, so everyone else of my age needed to take medicine.

What is even more disturbing is what was told to the people that the juvenile was the most cruel in Nirbhaya case was not true. But still our media propagated that until last moment. Many parliamentarians believed that to be true. Thankfully your minister clarified that in Parliament that it was a misinformation spread by the media.

The parents of Nirbhaya have taken the battle against you to a different level. They wanted media to use the real name of their daughter and told every media about this. It was as if they wanted the benefits pouring in for them in the name of Nirbhaya was not enough but they wanted govt. funds and policies in the real name of their daughter.

Nirbhaya's father

Many of us who were shocked by the incident, were disgusted by this publicity stunt. We have also seen celebrities openly saying that they were raped in their childhood and suddenly we saw getting raped as a symbol of empowerment. A new craze, new found feminist fantasy to shame India.

There was a section of media and many women who have openly violated set principles of not disclosing the name of juveniles in conflict of law, and the juvenile didn’t want his name to be disclosed, too. But the blood thirsty mob spilled the bins. Many of us were afraid that he would be killed by the mob after release. Luckily the NDA govt. didn’t behave like UPA govt. in 2013 and managed the situation well.


Watch  – Dr. Shashi Tharoor on Juvenile Justice Bill


Dear kids, (girls included) please also note that this new act is gender neutral. So our govt. rather your ministry believed that young girls can commit crime or tell lies but they still don’t believe that adult women can tell lies or commit crimes. That is why Domestic Violence or Rape laws in India are still not gender neutral. Even while passing the POCSO Act govt. demanded that it was gender neutral. A reason explained only by vote bank politics that keeps our adult women as children and vulnerable forever.

Today, I am deeply ashamed as your predecessor who could not save you kids from this danger. Now boys are in greater danger because when a 16 year old boy gets raped by a >18 year old adult woman, it will still be considered as a rape by the boy and he will be sent to adult prison. The adult criminal will move freely on the pretext of being the victim and continue to hunt other young boys. If a boy is brainwashed into any of these heinous crimes (say terrorism – ISIS takes juveniles and brainwash them to be suicide bombers) by adults, it will be considered as adult crime by the child.

Moreover, when as a society we can’t give you the required benefits, education, facilities to grow up as a mature adult, we expect that you should learn these on your own by magic. We, the most educated, trained and erudite people of India give our verdict from our glass houses and want to abolish the society that lives on the footpath, the children who earns a living by cleaning our shit, who sleeps on footpath and dream of small things as big success, the children who want to prove all the time that given a chance even they could make it big, very BIG and in the process of fulfilling their dream they commit crime; we blame them because in our society we have ostracized the marginalized and the poor.

This is the reason dear kids, most of the people who received death penalty in India are also from the poor and marginalized, most often not heard, most often without any direct evidence and in all cases based on their own confessions taken by police torture as this 2014 National Law University study shows.

Dear kids, if you understand the implications of what we have done to you in 2015 Dec, do ask your parents why they had given you such a bleak future. Yes, it is your parents who have decided this future for you. They were a part of the lynch mob that has lynched you even before your birth.

Juvenile Justice - Bangalore reaction

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Amendments to Hindu Succession Act and Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act (HAMA)- Double Jeopardy to Hindu families

Law, Legal balanceThe Law Commission of India (LCI) has recently recommended to the GOI to amend The Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act (HAMA) to make FIL responsible to maintain Hindu housewives when their husband is unable to maintain them. This rule will be applicable to the karta of any Hindu Undivided Family (HUF) too.

What the 252nd report of LCI says is that the Hindu husband becomes responsible for maintaining his wife for her life the moment they get married. So when the husband is not able to maintain his wife, it becomes the responsibility of the FIL or the karta of the HUF to maintain the destitute wife if the estate of the HUF is not divided. However, if the husband’s share in the HUF estate is given to him then the FIL is not responsible.

The fact that the husband becomes responsible for maintaining his wife comes from the seven oaths he takes while taking saat phera during their marriage.

However, a Hindu wife too take several oaths during their marriage but when she breaks any of those, she is never punished.

Let’s take a look at her oaths –

Phera 1 – To nourish each other

Bride’s vow – I will honour my husband. I take upon myself the responsibilities of the house and children.

We have never seen any Hindu wife being punished for not honoring the husband or not taking care of children. In fact, the custody of the child by default goes to the mother in most cases unless she is not interested. LCI or any of our courts never felt any need to create any new law based  on cruelty by mother.

Phera 2 – To grow together in strength

Bride’s vow- I will stand side by side with my husband in protecting our family and home.

What if when she abused her in laws or the husband? Why is that no authority ever decided to have special law for breaching this vow by a wife?

Phera 3 – To preserve couple’s wealth

Bride’s vow- I will be faithful to my husband and will support him

Well, we have never found any Hindu bride ever punished for swindling couple’s fund for maintenance of her family members. No one ever felt the need to amend any law even though there were many such complaints already filled by many husbands before different courts.

Phera 4 – To share their  joys and sorrows

Bride’s vow- I will do my best to please my husband.

It is the housewives who are demanding household work to be shared equally by the husband. They are also demanding household work, looking after in-laws is oppression. No court or LCI ever felt the need to amend any law to ensure this vow is not breached.

Phera 5 – To care for children and parents

Bride’s vow- I will trust and honour you. I will be with you always.

Well, it is the wives who raise maximum complaint of husband being unfaithful without honoring him. Most of the housewives demand separate household today because they don’t want to take care of their in-laws. Ironically we see courts not honoring this vow and ordering the husband to find a separate household based on her demand.

Also when the wives who dessert their husband and elope with their boy friend or simply decide to live with her parents instead of the husband no court ever feels the need to amend any law.

Phera 6 – To be together forever

Bride’s vow – I will always be with you in all your endeavours.

Ironically the adulterous wives who break this vow is never punished. In fact, Indian adultery law protects adulterous women and in-spite of many courts observing that adultery law is biased against men, LCI never felt the need to recommend any amendment. Neither did any govt feel the need to introduce any law.

Phera 7 – To remain friends, forever

Bride’s vow – I am delighted to be your wife. May we be together forever

Well so any deserting wife clearly breaks this vow. But never punished. Even if the husband gets divorce on the ground of desertion he needs to pay maintenance to a non existing wife.

So we see that none of the courts, LCI and GOI ever felt the sacredness of marriage when women break their marriage vows. It is felt only to punish the husband or men.

Coming back to other law amendments, in Feb 2013 GOI passed amendment to Hindu Succession Act, 1956 where the daughters were given equal share in their fathers’ property. GOI said during that time –

“This bill further makes provision to make the legal heir of a woman in case of her death (and her husband and children being absent) in following manner –

(i) firstly, upon the mother and the father of the female;
(ii) secondly, upon the heirs of the father of the female;
(iii) thirdly, upon the heirs of the mother of the female; and
(iv) lastly, upon the heirs of the husband of the female.”.

So we see that even though in-laws are responsible for maintaining a wife, in case such a housewife dies, her share of property goes to her parent’s heirs and NOT to any of her in-laws who has been maintaining her for throughout her married life.

If we look at both these amendments together we will see that GOI is making marriage equivalent to extreme cruelty for any Hindu male and his family. While the women and families that have NO contribution to the property, is given share, the legitimate heirs are denied their hard earned money.

So, it becomes clear that under different pretext and in the name of saving Hindu culture a sustained effort is being carried out to destroy the Hindu family system and make it a pure business for women and their families.

Article 15(3) of Indian Constitution: When Exception is the rule

Women Empowerment, the most discussed yet least achieved target for any Indian govt. The need to bring Indian women to the mainstream of population was felt long back in ‘50s, however even after six decades women in India are not empowered and the need of a new law to empower them is felt almost every now and then.

To understand how exception has become the rule in India, let’s see what is written in article 15 of the constitution –

ARTICLE 15

———————————————————————-

Prohibition of discrimination on grounds of religion, race, caste, sex or place of birth.

(1) The State shall not discriminate against any citizen on grounds only of religion, race, caste, sex, place of birth or any of them.

(2) No citizen shall, on grounds only of religion, race, caste, sex, place of birth or any of them, be subject to any disability, liability, restriction or condition with regard to—

(a) access to shops, public restaurants, hotels and places of public entertainment; or

(b) the use of wells, tanks, bathing ghats, roads and places of public resort maintained wholly or partly out of State funds or dedicated to the use of the general public.

———————————————————————

So this article of our constitution says that the state will consider everyone equal in terms of their access to any public property or wealth. The reason this article was brought in was that in ‘50s our India had a great issue of un touchability. People were simply denied access to public toilets, wells, bathing ghats etc. based on their caste or religion. So this article never talks about restricting anybody’s access from these public properties and hence gives a positive right to the people. So in a sense it is a positive step for the people discriminated, allowing them equal access to the public resources available.

Now let’s see Article 15(3) of constitution that empowers the state to make special provisions for women and children –

———————————————————————

ARTICLE 15(3)

“Nothing in this article shall prevent the State from making any special provision for women and children.”

———————————————————————-

So it states that even though the state will not discriminate anyone, they can make special provisions only for women and children for safeguarding their interests. From the main article we understand that it may be like having some bathing ghats marked only for women, or some wells accessible only for women or some other public properties made accessible only to women etc. So we understand that if these provisions are made men will not be allowed to access those resources. This also clarifies that all these resources are public resources and NOT any private resource.

To understand this abuse, if you read this article you will know how many such provisions already exist today only for women. We wonder why in spite of existence of so many provisions Indian women are never empowered.

On the other hand article 15(3) also talks about empowering children, but we don’t see new laws coming for empowering children that often. In fact, in recent past we have seen only Sexual Harassment of Children law being passed by the parliament whereas for women a new Sexual Assault Law (Nirbhaya Act), Workplace Harassment Law, Domestic Violence Act, Aendment to Hindu Succession Act and many other laws are passed and different reservation policies in public places (like transport, ladies special etc.), less tax for women taxpayers, Concession in House Registration, grace marks in IIM etc. are also enacted. Also provisions of Salary to the Wife, Marital Rape, Provisions under Food Security Bill etc. are discussed.

We wonder why women are given much more security and rights than even our children under Article 15 (3) and why most of these laws actually talk about creating harsher provision for men (which is negative right for men) rather than giving women right (which is positive right). And there can be no other reason other than the popular vote bank politics. We understand that children are not a vote bank for our politicians but women are. Hence we are made fools every day.

To understand the concept of positive rights vs negative rights let’s take example of Marriage Law Amendment (IrBM). Here a wife was given right to her husband’s inheritable and inherited property where she had not contributed. So this was negative right for husband where right to his own property was supposed to be taken away in the name of giving property to the wife. If the constitution was followed then Govt. should have designed a welfare program for those women from govt. funds (and not from the husband’s money). 

So even if we agree to what our leaders said in the parliament that –“98% women do not own property” even then the husband does not become responsible for giving them property. Now imagine how could unmarried women get property in this rule? This again confirms that IrBM bill was never intended to empower women but was aimed at extorting families so that the drama of empowerment continues.

Since this property given to the women under IrBM was not PUBLIC property but belonged only to their husbands, the applicability of Article 15 (3) did not arise (note constitution gives right to access to public places, institutions, properties etc. and not any private property). So this bill directly violated Article 15 that spoke about state not discriminating one based on one’s gender. Yet this was passed by Rajya Sabha for political reasons.

Our constitution makers wanted to bring reservation or special provisions only for 10 years. However, our politicians are continuing the same for vote bank politics and showing Article 15(3) as a reason. However, constitution only gave permission to create special provisions and not new laws for women. Unless this sense prevails in our legislature we can’t stop the anarchy prevailing in the society in the name law misuse and taking our legal system for a ride in all women centric laws.


Related Articles –

  1. The Politics of Women Empowerment in India

  2. An Open Letter to Honorable Supreme Court

Open letter to the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India and Hon’ble members of GOM

This mail to honourable supreme court of India and honorable ministers in Group of Ministers (GOM) reviewing the provisions of the proposed irretrievable Breakdown of Marriage (IRBM) bill or Marriage Law Amendment Bill, 2010 is to highlight the issue of gender biased legislations in India and requesting to rollback the proposed Marriage Law Amendment Bill.

At the outset I would like to bring to your kind attention the several already existing gender biased provisions in India – Gender Biased Laws and dangers to the society

Kindly note, that these gender biased provisions are taking India backwards and if UNDP HDI is any indicator, then we are constantly slipping in terms of human development in the country. It is worrisome to note that after the setting up of National Commission for Women (NCW) in 1990 India has gone down at a rapid rate on two important parameters on growth, i.e. Education and Employment.

In terms of education we find that between 1970 to 1985 literacy rate has increased from 47% to 57% (or 21%) for men and from 20% to 29% (or 45%) for women respectively. However, between 1985 to 2013 the same rate is decreased to 50% for men (~14% decrease) and to 26.6% for women (~7% decrease). This is alarming in the sense that 80% of our workforce constitute men today and with decrease in spread of secondary education among men and women Indian workforce becoming increasingly non competitive in the global market.

Also please note, women in India are not encouraged by the govt. to participate in the labour force thus “women participation in workforce” is stayed merely at 29% in 2012.

This statistics is alarming keeping in view that our focus has always been empowering only women and never the men. In order to achieve the same we have tried to suppress the needs of men. As a result we find reservations sought for women in different jobs and in educational institutions (like IITs, IIMs, AIIMS) of national and international importance. This makes life of men in India extremely difficult as there is no commission for men to take care of prevailing atrocities against men. As a result we find number of male suicides in India growing exponentially over the last twenty years compared to that of women suicide.

The focus of NCW had been only to create gender biased laws in the name of empowerment, they have completely ignored the fact of male suicide and male deprivation in that process. As a result we have seen skyrocketing suicide rate of men in the country. So the need of the hour is to have a commission for men’s welfare in the country and also to have one ministry for men’s welfare, too.

Kindly find an analysis on provisions of IRBM in different developed countries.that are in top 10 positions in terms of equality – A Comparative analysis of property division on divorce in different countries

This analysis shows that the marriage law amendment as proposed will not only be counterproductive but will drive men in the country to commit more suicide and in a way stop all marriages in India.

This is a request to the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India and also to the Hon’ble ministers in GOM to look into the aspect of constitutional validity of all such laws (existing and laws in the making) and make all laws gender neutral and include strict punishment for false complaints.

A Comparative analysis of property division on divorce in different countries

This analysis is done on divorce laws and specially Irretrievable Breakdown of Marriage (IRBM) and property division on divorce in nations leading in women empowerment denoted by an index called Gender Inequality Index (GII). To find more details on different factors that contribute to calculation of GII please see this short and simple analysis –

Human Development and Gender Equality in India

Netherlands (#1)

In Netherlands the following two conditions need to be satisfied with evidence in order to file a divorce under this section –

a.Continuation of marital cohabitation has become unbearable
b.NO prospects exist for re-establishing a marital relationship to any extent

When both spouses move to court under this act, divorce is granted immediately and no further enquiry or reconciliation is made or attempted by court.

When only one spouse move to court under this section court do not make any inquiry and grants immediate divorce when –

I.Defendant acknowledges of irretrievable breakdown of marriage
II.If the defendant defers to the judgment of the court, and
III.If within six weeks no defense is lodged

Court interferes only when there is objection from one spouse and then the other spouse need to prove marriage breakdown. Also if one spouse can prove grave financial hardship on divorce the couple will be given chance to come to an agreement between themselves. There is no fixed percentage of property share that goes to one spouse. One more interesting fact is any child 12 years or older can oppose any agreement between his parents. Children are also assisted with lawyer services.

Maintenance – While deciding maintenance of a spouse court considers pension from matrimonial property and other factors like his / her ability to maintain self etc. Maintenance is limited to 12 years only for marriages with children and 5 years only for brief marriage and marriages without children.

In Netherlands property acquired by both the spouses including those acquired before marriage is considered as community property and is divided equally on divorce unless agreed otherwise in a pre-nup. Any gifts, inherited property is kept outside this division.

Sweden (#2)

Swedish laws accepts unilateral divorce so even one spouse can move to court based on ‘no-fault’ divorce and the divorce will be granted. Fault has no relevance in Swedish divorce laws.

Here the maintenance granted to one spouse is only for a transitional period and it is assumed that the spouses are supposed to maintain themselves and all financial ties end with their divorce. Also the matrimonial property divided between the spouses has some bearing in the calculation of one’s maintenance needs.

In terms of division of matrimonial assets (property acquired after marriage) is divided after deducting the debts. Also if the property value is less or if one spouse will be in severe disadvantaged position after divorce the property may go to that spouse depending on different conditions. Gifts, inherited property etc are not considered for division.

Switzerland (#3)

In Swiss laws Irretrievable breakdown is a prerequisite in all different provisions of divorce. Generally if a couple lives apart for four years it is considered that the marriage is broken down irretrievably.

Regarding settlement of most of the issues including the spouses are given choice to enter into agreement but in matters relating to children court will interfere and check the best interests for the child.

Maintenance is need based and in terms of division of matrimonial assets, assets of both the spouses are considered and also one’s property worth is considered while calculating the need for maintenance etc.

Denmark (#4)

Any one spouse can seek to live separately without stating any reason and after two years of separation they get divorce under this act.

Maintenance is normally granted for a maximum of 10 years irrespective of how long the couple was married. There is only one type of maintenance payment possible in the form of monthly payments. Maintenance amount is calculated based on claimant’s need for maintenance, other spouse’s ability to pay maintenance, duration of marriage and the need of financial support for education and the like. Also maintenance period depends on number of years of cohabitation.

Danish law determines the deferred community of property (the net estate) to be divided under the principle of equal division of property. It is considered that the wife will get equal share in husband’s property earned during the matrimonial period. Unequal division of property is possible if equal division is unjust i.e. when the marriage is short duration or considering the contribution and economic circumstances of the spouse etc.

Norway (#5)

In Norway any spouse can seek divorce after one year of separation or two years of non cohabitation even without any reason. Here a housewife is given equal share in husband’s property acquired after marriage for her care for the house. However, when it leads to very unfair result court may apply its discretion to divide the property acquired after marriage.

Maintenance is granted in rare cases and only for limited period. Each spouse is expected to maintain themselves after divorce. However, if one spouse have lost / sacrificed career for the children one is entitled for maintenance for a limited period.

Germany (#6)

Any one of the couple can move to court under this provision if either they are separated for three years or they jointly move to court under this act after one year separation.

In this country too the couple’s accrued gains during the matrimonial period is considered and then divided equally. Also one’s contribution to marital property and other matrimonial faults (if any) will be considered while deciding the proportion of division.

Finland (#7)

Finnish law on divorce is based on mutual consent and the concept of irretrievable breakdown is not applicable there. Here on normal divorce maintenance is granted to any spouse based on need and only per court’s sole discretion. However, property transferred through any gift / will, or any property that is personal in nature like pension rights or copyrights of unpublished work etc. is not divided.

Even though spouses themselves are responsible for property or debt acquired by them before or during marriage, any debt taken for the family is equally divided. Here property division is considered with one’s property acquired before or after marriage. Any such division of property in most cases agreed in pre nuptial or other agreements between the spouses.

Slovenia (#8)

In Slovenia upon divorce only the joint property is divided either based on a mutual agreement between the spouses or with court’s interference. Normally it is considered that the assets acquired within the span of marriage the share had been equal unless any spouse proves otherwise. Also prior to decide on any share in property the debts accrued in marriage is taken care of and only after all debts of the couple is taken care of property is divided.

Also during such division if there is any asset that is important for one spouse to conduct his / her income, those assets are given to the spouse in question based on his / her request.

Normal gifts given during or before marriage need not be returned but other gifts that are not proportionate to the property state of the giver must be returned. If the original gifts are not in place equivalent value need to be returned.

France (#9)

In France the concept of IRBM is not in place but their Articles 237 and 238 of French Civil Code has provisions similar to this. Under these sections any spouse can move an application under this section if –

I. When the spouses have live separately for six years
II. One partner claims that the mental health of other spouse has changed so much that a conjugal life is no longer possible

Maintenance can be paid to one spouse based on change in social condition due to divorce. Maintenance is also adjusted against division of community property if any and keeping in view the deterioration of living standards of the weaker spouse. This law also authorizes the state to transfer property in the name of one spouse to the other based on conditions.
In France if one spouse is moving to court based on six years separation one has to maintain the other spouse financially. This can be terminated if the other spouse is living with another partner outside their marriage.

Iceland (#10)

Iceland is known as the happiest country in the world. In Iceland laws regarding divorce and division of property are simple in nature. Normally the couple decides the division of property beforehand through a matrimonial contract but in absence of such a contract the matrimonial assets are divided into half.

Any person is responsible for his / her debts individually and only the debts taken for common good is shared equally.

India (#132)

We all think India is shining and very soon we will catch up with the western nations in terms of development. While the previous analysis on different factors concerning Human Development and Gender Equality shows that we have hardly looked into the real factors of development and hence we are comparable only to African nations in terms of development today.

The proposed legislation which is brought in the name of women empowerment says any duration of marriage can come under this purview if there is a separation of three years. Only the wife is given right to oppose to such a divorce under ‘grave financial danger’. The proposal is that the property acquired by only the husband during the course of marriage and all his inherited, inheritable and shared property comes for division. Property acquired by the wife or her ancestral property or any of her shared property is not taken into consideration for division.

The bias in terms of extortion of men is very clearly visible in these provisions.

Unlike the developed nations, in India we do not have any concept of pre-nuptial agreement or community property where both spouses contribute and hence on divorce they get equivalent share back from their contribution. Also as evident in different other countries legislation states that expensive gifts etc exchanged between the spouses are also returned on divorce. In India however there is no provision for that (so men will think many times before they buy that diamond necklace or flat for her). Moreover in all other countries gifts or any other property that is personal in nature remains with the owner, but we don’t have any provision like that here.

In absence of so many vital parameters like pre-nupital agreement, concept of community property etc and with overwhelming bias against any female contribution to a matrimonial union (this is considered as dowry and the husband and family is booked under different criminal provisions) makes our marriages completely with zero contribution from the wife. Even if the wife is working and earning money she is not entitled to pay anything to the family and if the husband asks for money from her that is considered as domestic violence and again becomes punishable offence. The provisions made in this legislation are completely biased and rather regressive in nature. This legislation will not only refrain men in the country from entering into matrimonial union but this will also stop them from investing in any property and it will become the responsibility of the woman to buy property instead. The women who can not afford to buy any property will not get married.

Also there is no provision to check if the wife has really taken care of the home or the husband was forced to keep domestic helps to help her. Under normal circumstances, all of us have some domestic duties to perform. If the wife cooks, or takes care of children at home, husband also has non-documented duties like bringing grocery, taking care of household maintenance, taking kids to school or may simply provide for wife’s jewelry and make-up. There are many husbands who help their wives in many other domestic duties as well including nurturing the baby but there is no provision to pay them for that.

A husband works in a very competitive environment, under pressure situations with constant fear of losing a job under changing market conditions. Whereas a wife who has no competition from anyone, she has no checks and balances to perform in her job and in Indian system she one can not be forced to do any domestic duty there is practically no equity that can be brought in.

Many developed countries in the west have concept of spousal duty in marriage which is absent in India. We consider marriage as holy bond and not a contract but in this holy bond we are making provisions of extortion for men and making it dirty in nature.

When China realized the danger of property division and one’s property going to the other spouse, and revoked the property division clause recently, sadly enough in India we are trying to implement this in our country. If this legislation is brought in, in present form and not overhauled completely to make it gender neutral, take away any incentive for divorce and also make pre-nupital agreement and a contribution (financially as well as duty wise) must from the wife in any marriage, we will very soon see a situation of disturbance in India, as illustrated in this article –

Marriage Law Amendment – A Death Warrant for India

***

References

  1. “GROUNDS FOR DIVORCE AND MAINTENANCE BETWEEN FORMER SPOUSES” by Prof. Katharina Boele-Woelki, Olga Cherednychenko and Dr. Lieke Coenraad of Molengraaff Institute for Private Law, University of Utrecht

  2. “GROUNDS FOR DIVORCE AND MAINTENANCE BETWEEN FORMER SPOUSES” by Prof. Dr. Maarit Jänterä-Jareborg of University of Uppsala

  3. “GROUNDS FOR DIVORCE AND MAINTENANCE BETWEEN FORMER SPOUSES” by Prof. Heinz Hausheer and Dr. Stephan Wolf of University of Bern

  4. “GROUNDS FOR DIVORCE AND MAINTENANCE BETWEEN FORMER SPOUSES” by Prof. Ingrid Lund-Andersen and Lise Krabbe of Department of Private Law, University of Århus

  5. “GROUNDS FOR DIVORCE AND MAINTENANCE BETWEEN FORMER SPOUSES” by Prof. Tone Sverdrup of Department of Private Law, Faculty of Law, University of Oslo

  6. “GROUNDS FOR DIVORCE AND MAINTENANCE BETWEEN FORMER SPOUSES” by Prof. Dieter Martiny of Europa-Universität Viadrina Frankfurt (Oder) and Prof. Em. Dieter Schwab of Universität Regensburg

  7. “GROUNDS FOR DIVORCE AND MAINTENANCE BETWEEN FORMER SPOUSES” by Prof. Matti Savolainen and Helsinki

  8. “National Report – Finland” by Eva GOTTBBERG of University of Turku

  9. “GROUNDS FOR DIVORCE AND MAINTENANCE BETWEEN FORMER SPOUSES” by Prof. Frédérique Ferrand of University of Lyon

  10. “Matrimonial Property in Europe: A Link between Sociology and Family Law” by Branka Rešetar Faculty of Law, J.J. Strossmayer University, Osijek, Croatia and Published in Electronic Journal of Comparative law

Marriage Law Amendment Bill 2010 – A death warrant for India

[This article is based on the initial draft of the bill]

Property division on divorce

Image Courtesy – Men’s Rights Association

This morning India woke up to a devastating news, probably the most devastating and depressing news than the 2012 Delhi incident. This is because the new Marriage Law Amendment Bill 2010 is accepted by the cabinet committee. This proposal to change our marriage laws makes every Indian family vulnerable to extortion and misfortune. This amendment states that on divorce any wife will get share in her husband’s property – not only the property that is acquired after marriage but the property that is acquired before marriage including the inherited or shared one.

There is a slight change in this new amendment from the original bill introduced in 2010. Earlier it was said that equal share in matrimonial assets of the husband will be given to wife. The matrimonial assets were not defined properly. Different men’s rights groups demanded clarification to matrimonial assets and the clarification came now, that ‘matrimonial asset’ includes even inherited assets (movable and non movable assets) and shared property of the husband.

It is unfortunate for India that the nation had to accept all man hating laws in the name of women empowerment for years. This new section of marriage law amendment is set to make divorces easy, so that the couples don’t have to take court rounds for divorce. But at the face value even though it looks like a good initiative, reading the provisions of this act will make it clear that it is extremely sexist and male hating law.

Under this proposed act all Indian marriages done through Hindu Marriage Act or Special Marriage Act comes under its purview if it becomes a law. All it needs is a petition from either party in marriage for irretrievable breakdown of marriage. A separation of three years between the couple is needed to enforce such a decree.

If a husband files a divorce under this act, the proposed act empowers the wife to oppose divorce at any time on grave financial ground. Unless 50% of husband’s property (including inherited or shared property, property in joint name) is given to wife, the husband will not get divorce.

The wife’s behavior in the marriage is not considered. No matter how cruel the wife had been, how many relations did she have, no matter what was her conduct in the marriage, how much property did she or her parents have or no matter how poor the husband is, the wife will still get share in husband’s property. On the contrary husband will not get any share in the wife’s property no matter how wealthy she is. This is extremely biased legislation that will completely work against any man marrying under either Hindu Marriage ACT or Special Marriage Act.

On the contrary, the husband is not empowered to oppose the divorce filed by the wife under this. So any wife can file for divorce at any point in time and get away with husband’s property. We already see how even educated, adulterous and working women get maintenance today; tomorrow they will get 50% of husband’s property, too.

What is even more dangerous is that if the husband has dependent parents and their ancestral property and somehow he got into a bad girl or a bad marriage, he will end up giving away his property to that girl for no fault of his. Unless this proposed legislation wants to make marriage a crime for Indian men and the divorce under IrBM is the price he pays for that crime.

The new amendment also clearly proposes that if the property is in joint name and can’t be divided then the husband will have to pay money in lieu of the property.

If we look at the similar laws in other countries we will know in all countries such property division is only on property acquired after marriage and where both the partners have equal contribution. No gifts etc included in consideration of property calculation before dividing them. But only in India there is no mention of wife’s contribution. There is no mention of tenure of marriage which is another important parameter in property division in all developed countries. So now a wife can get husband’s property even for a few days of marriage. She can deny the husband any conjugal rights, have no moral standards, stay in her parents’ house and still gets heavily compensated for divorce.

Over the years different men’s rights groups are demanding gender neutral laws and gender justice for men. But we have seen how crime against women is always highlighted and made only burning issue in India. “Men’s suicide” which is far bigger issue than rape in India has never caught any attention. We have seen how men in India were proactive in giving women more rights and more safety. But nothing was enough for women groups. They kept on claiming more rights no matter HOW MUCH they have got. We have never seen people raising their voice against atrocities against men in the country barring only a few men’s rights groups.

This legislation will make sure that our divorce rate increases, more men commit suicide or commit murder of their wives. So far our divorces used to be peaceful and in some cases quick too (Mutual consent (MCD)). But now India will see a different era altogether. When women are given 50% share in husband’s property why should anyone agree to MCD. No matter what is the conduct of the wife had been, the husband pays up heavily for their marriage for no fault of his.

India has already seen degrading moral values where more and more people are getting into multiple sexual relations. Adultery has become very common in India. With this kind of biased legislation in place men in India will surely stop all marriages.

Now live – in relation  may seem to be the only alternative to this but in those relations as well women do not have any set responsibility or conduct. Women still get maintenance from their live-in boyfriends under domestic violence act. Their children get maintenance from him. Also any such relation going sour will invite rape charges against the man. Punishment for rape is even more stringent today.

So, all forms of peaceful relations are denied for Indian men today. They are either forced to commit a crime or commit suicide for no fault of theirs. Parents in India who has boys will see how their dreams turning into nightmare as the day passes. No matter what education one gives to one’s son, he will never get respect from society because – for so many years we have only projected ‘Respect Women’ theory, as if men in the country need no respect. As a result we get this kind of legislations for raping men legally and financially.

Today the number of husbands who commit suicide every year compared to married women is double due to already existing biased laws. Unfortunately no one including men in this country recognizes this issue. Leading women leaders openly proclaim these suicides as merely ‘farmer suicide’. In a country where a crime is not even recognized as a crime because of no coverage from mainstream media, how can any man expect justice?

As a nation if we don’t protest against these atrocities in all forums, if we don’t come forward to make such laws gender neutral, we will only see screwed up relations and increasing suicide among men. Thus if implemented in this form, Marriage Law Amendment will lead to enormous frustration, increased drug abuse, increased male and female prostitution, extortion in the name of sex, increased violent crimes and a situation of social anarchy. This is sure to act as a death warrant for this country.

If you think this article was a useful read for you, please share this with others and spread this knowledge. You may also want to check my other articles as all of them are equally interesting. If you are outrageous and think this is biased then still you share with others to have a healthy discussion on this topic. My blog is open to the feminists to share their free opinion as well.

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