Why women lose right to conduct her religious rites after inter-religious marriage?
The Supreme Court on Thursday found it hard to comprehend how a woman who opts to marry outside her religion under the Special Marriages Act loses the right to worship or conduct the last rites of her dear ones, when similar discrimination does not attach to men who marry outside their religion.
This question bothered a five-judge Constitution Bench in a case relating to a Parsi woman who was denied the right to enter the "Tower of Silence" — a worship place of Parsis, after she married a Hindu man. In view of her marriage outside the community, the elders of the Parsi trust had even declared that she will not be permitted to conduct the last rites of her father in the event of his death.
Challenging these two disqualifications, the petitioner Goolrokh M Gupta through senior advocate Indira Jaising raised the question of gender discrimination and submitted that the issue at hand went to the root of constitutional identity of a woman who decides to keep her religious identity intact by opting for a marriage under the Special Marriages Act. She further pointed out, that the rule of disqualification against her does not attach to Parsi men who marry a woman outside their community.
The Bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra, Justices AK Sikri, AM Khanwilkar, DY Chandrachud and Ashok Bhushan was moved to ask, "We cannot perceive how one can discriminate between a man and a woman on ground of biological phenomenon. While a man who marries outside his community is permitted to enter the place of worship, a woman who chooses to do so is not permitted."
Although a similar question is pending consideration with the Court relating to entry of women at Sabarimala temple, the bench was convinced that this matter too should be heard along with the other case. However, few Parsi women, who had an inter-faith
marriage and were present in Court narrated a totally different account saying that the Parsi trust to which they belonged allowed even women to enter the place of worship and conduct last rites of dear ones, without discriminating them.
The Court understood that some trusts are rigid in their stand and decided to ask the Parsi trust in question to take instructions by next week on whether it was willing to make a "uniform" concession for the petitioner.
- Rlys revised timetable: Many new niche trains on cards 15 Aug 2018 | PNS
- SC to hear TN’s plea against NGT order giving Vedanta access to Tuticorin plant 15 Aug 2018 | PTI
- Rupee fall due to economic mismanagement of Modi Govt, alleges Congress 15 Aug 2018 | PNS
- Cong dares PM to dissolve LS 15 Aug 2018 | PNS
- Tight security in Kashmir ahead of I-Day 15 Aug 2018 | Khursheed Wani
- Mamata raises NRC again, calls RSS for terror outfit 15 Aug 2018 | Saugar Sengupta
- Madras High Court orders CBI enquiry 15 Aug 2018 | Kumar Chellappan
- Stalin era begins in DMK 15 Aug 2018 | Kumar Chellappan
- BJP to launch enrolment campaign in Gujarat today 15 Aug 2018 | PNS
- Cong uses BJP’s ‘Beti Bachao’ slogan against Rajen Gohain 15 Aug 2018 | Anup Sharma
Sunday EditionView All
12 Aug 2018 | Kestur Vasuki | Bengaluru
Karnataka Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy who is facing wrath from the farmers in the State, in an appealing gesture planted paddy saplings in solidarity on Saturday. He chose Aralukuppe village in Mandya district the heart land of vokkaliga politics sowed paddy saplings in a muddied agriculture field amidst a large gathering...
STATE EDITIONSView All
15 Aug 2018 | Staff Reporter | Raipur
State of Chhattisgarh is moving faster from malnutrition to normal. But on the path, to achieve the target cooperation of all is required, said women and child development minister Ramsheela Sahu...