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Report No. 18

9. Summary of existing position regarding Islam, and course adopted.-

Now reviewing the entire field of the law relating to conversions to and from Islam, it will be seen (i) that the effect of conversion to Islam is the same as that of conversion to Christianity or Hinduism-the marriage is not dissolved;1 (ii) that the effect of conversion of a wife from Islam is the same as that from Christianity or Hinduism2-the marriage subsists notwithstanding the conversion, but it may be dissolved on the grounds stated in section 2 of the Dissolution of Muslim Marriages Act, 1939; and (iii) that the effect of conversion of the husband2 from Islam is, that the marriage stands dissolved by reason of such conversion, and it is only in this particular that the Muslim law differs from other system. We are of opinion that this difference is not so substantial as to require the exclusion of conversion from Islam from the purview of the proposed legislation.

It is to be noted in this connection, that even the Dissolution of Muslim Marriages Act, 1939, in so far as it enacted that by conversion the marriage of a Muslim wife was not dissolved, was a modification of the pre┬Čexisting law on the subject, and the proposed legislation only seeks to extend the principle of that enactment to conversion of husbands as well. We are of opinion that the advantages of having one law applicable to all conversions far outweigh all considerations based on such differences as have been noted above. The proposed legislation should, in our opinion, generally govern all conversions from one religion to another.

1. See para. 5, supra.

2. See para. 8, supra.

Converts Marriage Dissolution Act, 1866 Back

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