The Union cabinet has approved certain changes in the Marriage Act, thus hastening divorce proceedings for unhappy couples.
The new changes include legal recognition of a wife's right to property acquired by her spouse during their marriage, but the quantum of share will be decided by the courts. Also, equal rights will be given to both adopted and biological children.
The Marriage Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2010, seeks to make 'irretrievable breakdown of marriage' a new ground for grant of divorce. The courts can reduce or waive the currently mandatory 6-month cooling-off period before moving a joint motion in case of divorce by mutual consent. While a wife can oppose a husband's plea for divorce under the new 'irretrievable breakdown of marriage' clause, the husband will have no such right if the wife moves the court on the same grounds.