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Union Cabinet approves Introduction of Registration of Marriage of NRI Bill, 2019

The Union Cabinet has approved the introduction of Registration of Marriage of Non-Resident Indian Bill, 2019 to create more accountability to Indian citizens living abroad. The bill mainly seeks to offer more protection against exploitation of Indian citizens, mostly Indian women by their NRI partners.

Feb 14, 2019 11:45 IST
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The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on February 13, 2019 approved the introduction of Registration of Marriage of Non-Resident Indian (NRI) Bill, 2019 to create more accountability to Indian citizens living abroad.

The bill mainly seeks to offer more protection against the exploitation of Indian citizens, mostly Indian women by their NRI partners.

Key Highlights

The Bill provides for amendment of the legal framework to act as a deterrent to the erring NRI spouses and creating more accountability and offer protection against exploitation of Indian Citizens, specially women married to NRIs.

Under the new bill, a marriage between an NRI and an Indian citizen will have to be registered in India or Indian missions and posts abroad within 30 days from the date of marriage.

After the bill’s passing, the necessary changes would be carried out in the Passports Act, 1967 and Code of Criminal Procedure 1973 by insertion of Section 86A.

According to the proposed amendments, if the marriage isn't registered within 30 days, the passport of the NRI will be revoked, summons and warrant be issued.

Despite all this, if the NRI fails to appear in court, his properties will be attached and he will be declared 'Proclaimed Offender'.

Impact

The Bill would offer great protection to Indian citizens married to NRIs and serve as a deterrent to NRIs against harassment of their spouses.

It is expected to benefit Indian women married to NRIs across the world. 

The bill would amend the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, solving a major problem of serving judicial summons for court proceedings in India.

Background

The bill has been introduced with the hope of restricting NRI husbands from using marriage as a tool of exploitation and making money and providing better enforcement of rights for the deserted woman under the family laws.

The introduction of the Bill was necessitated due to numerous complaints received from Indian nationals mostly women, who were deserted or harassed by their Non-Resident Indian Spouses.

Since marriage takes place outside India, there are no records or legal documents for further procedures to be initiated against the offender.

Hence, once the Bill is passed, such practices will be curbed and it will provide much needed relief to all Indian women married to NRIs worldwide.

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