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Registration of marriage mandatory in Himachal

By Our Staff Correspondent

SHIMLA, JULY 15. Himachal Pradesh has emerged as the first State to make registration of marriages compulsory with the coming to force of the Himachal Pradesh Marriage Registration Act, 1996, from July 9 this year. This was stated by the Chief Minister, Virbhadra Singh, while presiding over the inaugural ceremony of a State-level conference organised jointly by the National Commission for Women and the State Commission on `Status of Women in Himachal Pradesh' here today.

Mr. Singh said that the legislation had first been introduced by the ruling Congress in 1996 but remained pending for enactment during the preceding BJP regime. It was taken up again after the Congress returned to power last year and ratified by the Assembly.

The Act authorises all magistrates and marriage registration authorities to ensure that each and every marriage is registered within their areas of operation so that the interests of women could be legally safeguarded.

Purnima Advani, chairperson of NCW, stressed upon the need to check polyandry, polygamy, dowry and treatment of women as inferior to men.

Viplove Thakur, chairperson of the H.P. State Commission said out of 586 cases received by the Commission 375 were disposed off during preceding financial year. She said district level women's courts were also being established to listen to their grievances.

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