Category Archives: Delhi

Special Marriage Act, 1954

The Special Marriage Act, 1954, aims to provide for a special form of marriage, its registration and for divorce. A marriage between any two persons belonging to any religion or creed may be solemnised under this Act if at the time of the marriage the male has completed 21 years and the female 18 and provided the parties are not within the degrees of prohibited relationship.

Special Marriage Act, 1954

Special Marriage Act, 1954

One would imagine that the Special Marriage Act, being a secular Act, would have played a key role in liberating individuals from the traditional coercive requirements of marriage. Sadly, many of its provisions are inconsistent with its objectives. Despite knowing about the practical problems its working has exposed, Parliament has not shown any seriousness in addressing them through appropriate amendments.

Section 5 of the Special Marriage Act is the first hurdle to cross. It deals with the notice of intended marriage between two parties and requires that at least one of them must have resided in the district for a period of not less than 30 days immediately preceding the date on which such notice is given to the Marriage Officer of the district.

Section 6 requires the Marriage Officer to make copies of all notices open for inspection at all reasonable times, without fee, by any person desirous of inspecting the same, and to publish every notice by affixing a copy at some conspicuous place in his office. If either of the parties to an intended marriage is not a permanent resident in the district in which the notice has been given, then the Marriage Officer of that district has to send the notice to the Marriage Officer of the district in which the parties may have permanent residence, and that officer, in turn, has to publicise it.

These provisions are open invitations to those who object to the marriage to harass the couple to be married and even force them to retract from their intended marriage. The beneficiaries of the Special Marriage Act have demanded that the provisions of a month’s gap be annulled, but their plea has not been heard so far.

On the contrary, some enthusiastic marriage officers have sent notices to the permanent addresses of the parties and sought verification of addresses through the Station House Officer who has jurisdiction although the same is not required under the Act. In 2009, the Delhi High Court, in Pranav Kumar Mishra vs Government of NCT of Delhi, held these practices to be in breach of the parties’ right to privacy.

Justice S. Ravindra Bhat observed in this case: “The Special Marriage Act was enacted to enable a special form of marriage for any Indian national professing different faiths or desiring a civil form of marriage. The unwarranted disclosure of matrimonial plans by two adults entitled to solemnise it may, in certain situations, jeopardise the marriage itself. In certain instances it may even endanger the life or limb of one or the other party due to parental interference. In such circumstances, if such a procedure is being adopted by the authorities, it is completely whimsical and without authority of law.”

Although Justice Ravindra Bhat made these observations in the context of the authorities sending notices to the residential addresses of the couple to be married, they are relevant to understand the mischief potential of the other provisions of the Act.

Section 7 enables any person, before the expiry of 30 days from the date on which such a notice has been published, to object to the marriage on the grounds that it will contravene one or more of the conditions specified in Section 4 (described below).

Section 8 requires the Marriage Officer to inquire into the objection and satisfy himself that it does not prevent the solemnisation of the marriage. If the objection is upheld within 30 days, either party to the intended marriage can appeal to the district court, whose decision shall be final.

The conditions specified in Section 4 are reasonable: that neither party has a spouse living; that neither is incapable of giving a valid consent to marriage in consequence of unsoundness of mind; that they have fulfilled the minimum age requirements for marriage; and that they are not within the degrees of prohibited relationship. Yet, the fact that similar conditions are not applicable to marriages held outside the purview of the Act makes one wonder whether they are just.

Section 19 is punitive in character. It says that the marriage solemnised under this Act of any member of an undivided family who professes the Hindu, Buddhist, Sikh or Jain religion shall be deemed to effect his severance from such family.

The need for such a provision is inexplicable, especially when such severance could result in the deprivation of inheritance and other rights of the couple choosing to marry under this Act.

What are the documents they needs to sermonize the marriage process?

Documents required to sermonize the marriage..

  • Affidavit : (Affidavit must be attested by Magistrate/S.D.M. or Notary Public with  Register Entry No.)
  • Age Proof: (Voter I. card, Driving Licence, Matriculation Certificate,) one of these.
  • Residence Proof:  (Voter I. card, Driving Licence, Matriculation Certificate, Passport) (one of these).
  • Photograph: (7-7 Passport size photo ) Boys & Girl both.
  • Divorced: If any party is divorcee – Certified copy of Decree of Divorce granted by the Court.
  • Death Certificate: If any party is widow / widower – Death Certificate of the dead spouse.
  • Other Country: No Impediment Certificate / NOC from concerned Embassy and Valid VISA. Required for Only Other Country Marriage
  • Things : Mangalshutra, 2-Jaimala, 2kg Sweets
  • Witness : Two Witness With Voter I. card, Driving Licence,  Passport,2 Passport size photo (one of these)

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How long will the entire procedure of Marriage Registration take?

Due to a 30 day average gap between submission and registration, I think it will take at least 40 days after submission.After that at the date is given by Arya Samaj Mandir for your marriage.On that day it will takes maximum 1½ Hrs to perform the wedding. I had an experience while I am witness over there. It will take maximum to maximum one hour.

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Vastu and Griha Pravesh Pooja

Griha Pravesh is also called Vastu. The complete ritual takes six to seven hours. Early in the morning, Vastu pooja for Vastu devata is performed outside the house before the actual entry into the house.

During Vastu puja, a kumbh (copper pot, as in the Bhoomi puja) is consecrated through worship out side the house. The Vastu pooja is undertaken to expiate the sins that could have been committed by the owners of the house during construction.

After completing the Vastu and Kumbh pooja, the copper pot is taken inside the house by the husband and wife to a place where havan and various poojas take place. In the ritual inside the house different poojas like, pooja of sun, pooja of lamp, Ganpathi pooja, Pooja of the Kul devta, pooja of four directions, showering (abhishek) of the couple with water, Lakshmi pooja and Homa are all done.

This pooja is concluded by distributing peanuts, dry fruits and pede- a kind of sweet made of milk, as prasad. Finally the guests are fed. On the eve of the graha pravesh, vastubali is performed inside the house.

This is a pooja performed by a priest who is not a member of the family. It consists of Ganapathi pooja, Punyaha and Vastubali homa. These are done to appease the gods and propitiate them.

Every Pooja begins with invoking Lord Ganesha and then the specialized moola mantra japam and other rituals help the Vedic Bramhin assigned the task to achieve your hearts desire through your sankalpam (your wish is conveyed at the fire ritual ceremony).

Purity of panchang (almanac) and auspicioustime (muhurat) must be considered during the griha pravesh.

Three types of griha pravesh have been mentioned in our ancient scriptures:

Apoorva: First entry to newly constructed house on a newly selected land is called apoorva (new) griha pravesh.

Sapoorva: Entry into an already existing house after travelling abroad or migration elsewhere is called sapoorva griha pravesh.

Dwandwah: Entry into a house to after reconstruction or renovation subsequent to damage due to fire, flood or earthquake, is termed as dwandwah (old) griha pravesh.

For apoorva griha pravesh, the exact auspicious time need to be adhered to. For sapoorva griha pravesh or dwandwah griha pravesh, the purity of the panchang should be given due consideration.

Yagyopavit Upanayana Sanskar

The Upnayan sanskar (Yahyopavit Sanskar) denotes the rising of Man’s consciousness towards God.The sacred thread ceremony is very significant in the life of a Hindu man.In Indian culture its an taking pledge to lead disciplines, dignified spiritual life.

After Yagyopaveet , the child left his Home saying goodbye to all relatives who had gathered for this Goodbye.It indeed gives “new birth” to a person.His life would change. Discipline would then become the center point of his life.The child went to his Guru’s place and learn the art of living and develop vision to see things in a proper way and to know what is ‘wrong’ and what is ‘right’. Therefore, Upnayan is essential to handle household life.

The twist in the thread symbolizes strength and honesty. Gayatri Mantra is given to the child who promises to lead a good human life as per the rules of Vedas.This shikha is placed at a point, which is very important for positive impact of yoga and meditation.

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