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Report No. 81

View of Select Committee on General Marriage Act.- The Select Committee, however, felt that a General Marriage Act of the proposed nature would be quite different from, and generally very much larger than, the scope of the Bill. Further, the classes for whose relief the Bill was intended to provide were sincere and in their own view orthodox Hindus. They would consider no marriage as made in accordance with their own law and as therefore moral which was not made according to their own rites. They considered these rites as perfectly applicable and perfectly sufficient for the case.

There was no ground for presuming otherwise. It would be casting a slur upon the class for whose relief the Bill was intended and would be, in fact, to some extent, to side with their adversaries-if the municipal law pronounced that these rites were not sufficient for the case. That this Bill did not give relief to those whom a General Marriage Act might afford relief was no objection to this Bill. The Committee expressed a fervent hope that those who on their own account really wished such an Act (i.e. a general marriage law) to be passed should petition for what they, want, without complicating either that subject or the subject of the present Bill by unnecessarily confounding them together.

Hindu Widows Re-marriage Act, 1856 Back

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