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Pakistan Becomes First Country To Bring Separate Law For Sikh Marriage Registration


Pakistan becomes first country to bring separate law for Sikh Marriage registration
RAVINDER SINGH ROBIN Wednesday, 23 January 2008

AMRITSAR:Pakistan has become the first country to approve sparate law for registration Sikh marriages following federal cabinet approved the Sikh Marriage Ordinance 2008. Now, Sikhs can get their marriages registered in Pakistan under the ordinance.

Sikh bodies including Akal Takhat, SGPC, Delhi Sikh Gurdawara Management Committee and American Gurdawara Management committee have welcomed the decision of Pakistan government.

Pakistan Minister for Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs, Syed Afzal Haider, speaking Punjabnewsline.com from Islamabad said that In all, 27 Federal Ministers, including Caretaker Prime Minister Mohammadian Soomro, had singed the ordinance. Under the ordinance any Sikh couple could come here from any part of the world to get their marriage registered, Haider said.
The Pakistan government has specified five places, including Nankana Sahib, Karachi, Peshawar, Islamabad and Lahore, for solemnising Sikh marriages under the ordianance.

He said the law comprehensively addresses the grievances of the Sikh community relating to solemnisation of marriage; divorce; legitimacy of children of voidable marriages; alimony and maintenance, custody and maintenance of children; and registration of marriages, which were not mentioned in the Anand Marriage Act 1909.

The Minister said that the law would become operational in a day or two after being endorsed by President Pervez Musharff, presently on a foreign visit.

Jathedar Joginder Singh Vedanti, the high priest of Akal Takhat, congratulated Pakistan and the Sikh organisations.However, Vedanti said that Indian government should also follow Pakistan in enacting a similar law, as a majority of the Sikh community lives in India.

Dr. Pritpal Singh, Convener, American Gurdwara Parbhandhak Committee (AGPC), said that the ordinance would certainly aim at welfare of the community and giving a legal sanctity to their distinct identity. while giving cradit to all the members of the team Dr. Pritpal thanked Parmjit Singh Sarna, president DSGMC specially for their contribution.

Parmjit Sigh Sarna, president Delhi Sikh Gurdwara management Committee (DSGMC) announced that DSGMC would honor the Pakistan's minister for law, Justice and parliamentary affairs Syed Afzal Haider. He said that we had already given several representations to the government of India for enacting the separate law for the Registration of Sikhs marriage in India but nothing has yet been done. He urged that Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh personal take the matter and do the needed step for making separate Sikh marriage act law.

Pakistan Sikh Gurdwara Parbhandhak Committee (PSGPC) President Bishan Singh said many Sikh couples would come to Pakistan for getting their marriages registered, especially during Baisakhi celebrations.

Shiromani Gurdwara Parbhandhak Committee (SGPC) President Avtar Singh Makkar also hailed the ordinance.

Hardev Singh Mattewal, advocate general of Punjab said that we have been consonantly in touch with the center government regarding the issue and looking in to its pros and cons. He said that we are considering all the options and examining it closely. We would suggest centre government what would be the best in the interest of the Sikhs, savior of the nation, said he.
Re: Pakistan becomes first country to bring separate law for Sikh Marriage registrati

in a country who's laws are based on religion, like pakistan, this kind of act for different religions is necessary. but in a truly secular country, there is only ONE law for all marriages. a civil law. the religious part of the marriage should not be regulated by government at all.

i still don't understand why so-called "secular" india feels the need to regulate religious ceremonies...