Cabinet approves amendment to Hindu Marriage Act on divorce

      Union Cabinet on Thursday approved an amendment in the Hindu Marriage Act 1955 and Special Marriage Act 1954. Talking to reporters after meeting, Minister for Information and Broadcasting Minister Ambika Soni said that this amendment provides for divorce of a couple in case of irretrievable differences. "This will have to be carried out with mutual consent and will help reduce the harassment," she added. The Bill would provide safeguards to parties to marriage who file petition for grant of divorce by consent from the harassment in court if any of the party does not come to the court or wilfully avoids the court to keep the divorce proceedings inconclusive. At present, various grounds for dissolution of marriage by a decree of divorce are laid down in section 13 of the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955. The grounds inter alia include adultery, cruelty, desertion, conversion to another religion, unsoundness of mind, renouncement of the world and not heard as being alive for a period of seven years or more. Section 27 of the Special Marriage Act, 1954 also lays down similar grounds.

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