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Report No. 59

Revision of Laws is a continuous process

1.16. It may sound platitudinous but is nevertheless true that revision of laws is a 'must' in a dynamic society like ours which is engaged on the adventure of creating a new social order founded on faith in the value-system of socio-economic justice enshrined in our Constitution. With the changing times, notions of fairness and justice assume newer and wider dimensions, and customs and beliefs of the people change. These, in turn, demand changes in the structure of law; every progressive society must make a rational effort to meet these demands.

Between the letter of the law and the prevailing customs and the dictates of the current value-system accepted by the community, there should not be an unduly long gap. Ranade often said that the story of social reform, which involves reform in personal law, is an unending story; it continues from generation to generation. Each generation contributes to the continuance of the effort of social reform; but the effort is never concluded and the end is never reached in the sense that no further attempt to reform is required. It is in that sense that we believe that the revision of personal laws, and indeed, of all laws, has to be undertaken by modern societies. These thoughts have been present in our mind when we embarked upon the present inquiry.

Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 and Special Marriage Act, 1954 Back

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