THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Minister for Local Administration Paloli Mohammed Kutty has sought to clear misgivings about the marriage registration rules that came into force in the State two years ago.

Mr. Mohammed Kutty said in an official release here on Wednesday that there were attempts to create schism in society in the name of the rules. The Supreme Court had directed the government to frame the marriage registration rules and the Chief Minister had held meetings with leaders of various communities. The rules specify that all marriages conducted after March 1, 2008, should be registered at the local self-government institution concerned. This is applicable to the marriages conducted as per the Hindu, Muslim and Christian religious conventions and also as per the Special Marriages Act. This does not impose any restriction on conducting marriages as per the tenets of any religion or question the validity of the certificates issued by religious institutions. Such certificates too would be treated as authoritative documents. No restrictions have been placed on registering marriages before February 29, 2008, when the rules came into force. There was no compulsion to register those marriages.

Still, there was a campaign that those who had not registered the marriage before the cut-off date would not get the benefits of the government. This was baseless.

Now even the elderly are queuing up at the offices of the civic bodies to register their marriages. The Minister sought to allay the fears regarding marriage registration.

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