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AIDWA expresses concern over SC ruling on divorce

Written by: Staff

New Delhi, Mar 23 (UNI) The All India Democratic Women's Association (AIDWA) today expressed concern over the Supreme Court recommendation on enacting laws for granting divorce due to irretrievable breakdown of marriage, saying it will further worsen the position of women.

''Such a law should not be formulated by the government in the absence of a law on the women's rights to marital property, child support and adequate maintenance,'' AIDWA present Subhashini Ali said.

On March 21, the Apex court recommended that the government change the 1955 Hindu Marriage Act to include irretrievable breakdown of marriage as ground for divorce.

At present it allows divorcee on the ground of cruelty, adultery desertion continuously for more than two years, conversion to another religion, mental disorder, affliction with a deadly disease and renunciation.

She said it was unfortunate that divorce laws mostly serve patriarchal interest.

''This law should not be a tool for unscrupulous husbands to get rid of their wives and children before providing for an adequate financial settlement,'' she added.

The AIDWA president said Indian women do not have the right to any of the assets in the matrimonial home even after years of marriage and their contribution to the household has not been recognised by the law.

The only right women have is maintenance which they find extremely difficult to access, Ms Ali pointed out.

''Courts take long time to pass order on the maintenance and they are forced to become totally dependent on natal families for their day-to-day sustenance,'' she said.

''To bring the law suggested by the Supreme Court in these circumstances would add insult to injury.'' UNI NR MSJ KP1345

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