Hindus demand their right to register marriages

Published: April 1, 2011
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Hindus say denial of legal matrimonial recognition leads to the denial of other basic rights.

Hindus say denial of legal matrimonial recognition leads to the denial of other basic rights.

ISLAMABAD: 

Calling for an end to institutionalised discrimination going back 62 years, the Scheduled Caste Rights Movement of Pakistan (SCRM) demanded quick passage of a law pertaining to Hindu marriage registration.

In a press conference held here on Thursday, the SCRM pleaded the parliamentarians and concerned citizens to give Hindus the same treatment as other communities vis-a-vis their right to register marriages.

They warned the government that they would launch a forceful campaign if it failed to protect their basic rights, particularly that of marriage registration. They announced the launch of a nation-wide “signature campaign” in this regard.

Hindu women, hailing from different parts of the country, expressed regret over the government’s failure to end injustice against the poor women of the Hindu community. They alleged that they were being discriminated against in the right to possess Computerized National Identity Cards (CNIC), which, in their view, was congruent with a denial of their basic rights of citizenship.

“On not being able to produce marriage registration certificates, we are not entitled to get CNIC, which in turn denies us the right to vote as well. Despite the Supreme Court’s suo motu ruling of November 23 2010 in our favour, no measures have been taken to introduce legal provisions for our rights,” said Sangeeta Devi.

Shami Mai, a poor woman from Rahim Yar Khan, said, “In case of separation or domestic violence, a Hindu woman cannot register a complaint in government departments because she does not have any legal document to establish the perpetrator as her husband.”

Hindu families also face a great deal of problems while travelling. “If we travel or stay in a hotel, policemen and hotel administrations mistreat us. They become suspicious of our relation to each other. If the government passes a law that enables
us to register married couples, we would be able to defend our self respect by showing documentary evidence of
our statuses. In most cases, we end up spending nights at railway stations or foot-paths,” complained Naina Bai.

In the view of Anita Vadhani, an O-level student, Hindu women faced many more problems than women of other faiths in Pakistan. “If one of our girls is abducted or there is an incident of forced conversion or remarriage, we cannot contest the case in courts because we don’t have marriage certificates,” she told The Express Tribune.

Shanktala Devi, a housewife, said that the absence of marriage registration laws had deprived Hindu women of their right to property and other rights conferred upon a divorced or widowed woman. She urged the quick passage of a bill ensuring them their right to register marriages in local government departments.

The members of the Hindu community threatened to hold a sit-in in front of the parliament building in June if their demands remained unmet. They urged the media and the concerned citizens of Pakistan to show support for their campaign by participating in it.

Published in The Express Tribune, April 01st, 2011.

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Reader Comments (29)

  • LOL
    Apr 1, 2011 - 10:17AM

    Can Pakistan please treat its minorities like normal citizens?Recommend

  • Abdulla
    Apr 1, 2011 - 11:17AM

    You pakis cry over muslims being mis-treated in India and what are you doing with your minorities really sorry state, I am proud to be a part of India thank god My fore fathers didn’t select Pak during 1947., and my request to Pak Govt, Administration please treat your minorities in dignity, and treat them with equal rights as we enjoy the same in India.,

    and my Paki brothers before showing “show fingure” towards Indian (Hindus) please verify your “thumb fingure” is directing towards you, so please set your house right before accusing India(ns). you people are treating your minorities worst then worst animals… sorry to say may allah give right direction to this country men., in which way you people are pure in Pureland god knows.,

    I request Indian Muslims, please feel proud to be Indian you are treated and respected atleast as human not like our brothers do in Pakistan.Recommend

  • Sonu
    Apr 1, 2011 - 12:08PM

    These Hindus deserve this treatment,by staying back in Pakistan.Recommend

  • antony
    Apr 1, 2011 - 12:27PM

    I as a christian living in Tamil nad feel uttterly depressed that Pakistan treats so badly to hindu’s basic rights .. I heard one pakistani cab driver talking to me in london about India’s atrocities in orissa of church burning and blaming India as hindu fanatics . I had to highlight to him that these are vandalism cases just like robbery which every country endures .

    I sincerely want pakistan legislators to live in India for few months and interact with common people of various religious background and understand how good India in safeguarding indian citizen’s religious ,civil rights. Now please apply that to Pakistan in piece meal approach please!Recommend

  • abc
    Apr 1, 2011 - 12:52PM

    This is insane, I cant believe they cant register their marriages after 62 years! As Muslims we also need to stand up for their rights now!Recommend

  • Ravi
    Apr 1, 2011 - 1:13PM

    Now i understood why Hindu is getting extinct in ancient bhoomi of Bharat.Oh my God basic human right is being denied to these miserable people.But credit must be given to ET to highlight the plight of Hindu in Pakistan.I appeal to Indian Muslim before accusing anything to Indian Govt just compare yourself to Pakistani minority.Recommend

  • pl/sql
    Apr 1, 2011 - 1:25PM

    And just who is surprised knowing about the state of minorities in Pakistan?Recommend

  • Ali
    Apr 1, 2011 - 1:57PM

    Thank yo ufor highlighting this, we must support our Hindu brothers and sisters to get their full rights. Plesae sign the petition!Recommend

  • GOD IS ONE
    Apr 1, 2011 - 2:00PM

    I am not at all surprised, when you get to hear all the happenings in PAKISTAN.

    My “ALLAH” clearly knows, what to do with this nation and with the people who are unfit to be humansRecommend

  • Ron(India)
    Apr 1, 2011 - 3:01PM

    Why didn’t they join India?? Why do they live in the Islamic republic of pakistan??Recommend

  • Bharat
    Apr 1, 2011 - 3:06PM

    These Hindus deserve this treatment,by staying back in Pakistan.

    SONU: Your statement itself reflect your intellect and intelligence. We in India have more Muslims than you have in Pakistan.

    Muslims in India have more freedom than you have in Pakistan. Muslims have flourished more in India than in Pakistan today.

    Pakistan is a country born out of religion divide created by Jinna to fulfill his dreams and agenda. You have to learn that this theory of religion based state is a FAILED STATE and will head for more divisions.

    Zia Ul Haq made you bankrupt. Mushraff snatched away all your dreams. You are a society now moving on crutches of Religion and Military.Recommend

  • Khalid Rahim
    Apr 1, 2011 - 3:08PM

    To all who commented; Don’t you all know that only those who are members of registered
    or banned Muslim Religious Organizations are considered as true Muslims. Did you know to
    reach The Almighty one has to first approach the Chief Executives of these organizations and if they approve then you may approach Allah and seek His Blessing. This is the State in
    which Human life has no value, let alone other creatures. Now you do not have to file a civil
    suit to recover or criminal charge to seek justice. All you need is to pay handsomely a small time Mullah who will provide four witnesses and voila you vanish. This is happening to those
    who recite the Kalima! How can you expect minorities to get basic rights less they pay the
    Ministry of Religious Affairs some small gratification to cover the Hajj expenditure.
    ” Ajab nahi keh khuda tak teri rasai ho. Teri niga seh hai poshida aadami ka muqaam-Iqbal.Recommend

  • Apr 1, 2011 - 3:27PM

    I am surprised that none of respondents acknowledged the one positive aspect of this story – the Hindus are standing up and demanding their rights. This is what democracy in Pakistan has given them with the emergence of free media. So kudos to ET and others for highlighting these stories. Looking forward to more stories of democracy in action – very inspiring. Recommend

  • Anonymus
    Apr 1, 2011 - 3:33PM

    This is a good step highlighted by hindu minorities.we should have our basic rights. To safegaurd our rights because we are pakistani citizens, is the duty of government of pakistan.So i would also recomend and favour in this movement of having law pertaining to the hindus marriage registration.Recommend

  • J.Oberoi
    Apr 1, 2011 - 3:40PM

    The Hindus that stayed back in Pakistan trusted Mr.Jinnah who promised a state where religion will not play a part and where minorities can live in peace with equal rights. So much for his promises. These people should migrate to India. Recommend

  • Nageen
    Apr 1, 2011 - 3:43PM

    Stupidistic!Recommend

  • Bilal Khan
    Apr 1, 2011 - 4:00PM

    What nonsense??

    So are you telling me Justice Rana Bhagwandas as Justice of Supreme Court of Pakistan … he was also acting chief Justice, didn’t have NIC & marriage certificate etc what load of rubbish is this story

    We have had a couple of cricket players including from hindu minorities (Danish Kaneria being Pakistan premier spinner) in cricket team how could they get passport and travel all over the world ?

    I don’t believe this story for a second as I know personally many christian friends who used to study with us and no one treated them differently ever. And there are many well known writers and actors from minorities in PakistanRecommend

  • Anonymus
    Apr 1, 2011 - 4:00PM

    I also recomemend this that its true there should be law peraining to the hindu marriage registration. In absence of the law (we)hindu face lots of difficulties in every issue regarding marriage.In presence of law every one will have to follow same rules as written in case of ambiguties,and the rights of hindues will also be safegaurded and protected in light of LAW.Recommend

  • B.L
    Apr 1, 2011 - 4:19PM

    This is a good step highlighted by hindu minorities. we should have our basic rights. To safegaurd our rights because we are pakistani citizens, is the duty of government of pakistan. So i would also recomend and favour in this movement of having law pertaining to the hindus marriage registration. This law wil ensure the rights being protected for hindus in case of marraige issues and ambiguties. Recommend

  • Ravi [India]
    Apr 1, 2011 - 4:31PM

    In india mussies can marry their sisters and tell their wives talak talak talak and it is valid in indian constition.
    Where is now the subhanallaa inshalla brigade????
    Where are sons of bin quasim and ghazni gauri ready to take out “atrocities on muslims in india sword” every times a sane indian like me visits this site??????Recommend

  • Sikander
    Apr 1, 2011 - 5:28PM

    @Bilal Khan:
    what do you mean by nonsense! yes nonsense indeed you still do not know what all happens in our Pakistan. This is tip on the iceberg my friend.

    When minorities are not allowed even to live what do you think they are given the right to register. ha ha ha .Recommend

  • KUSHAGRA DIXIT
    Apr 1, 2011 - 10:24PM

    @Bharat:
    well said!Recommend

  • Balwinder Singh
    Apr 1, 2011 - 11:04PM

    Mark my words – it is the presence of Sikhs, Hindus and Christian minorities in Pakistan that is preventing a total descent into chaos. God forbid – if these folks are forced to migrate to India or elsewhere, it will be the end of credibility for Pakistan.Recommend

  • Rehman Baloch
    Apr 2, 2011 - 12:52PM

    haa,wht else can u expect from a nation whose founding principle is “divisiveness”.once they force these poor minorities out they will start to fight amongst themselves.shia vs sunni,pashtu vs punjabi,sindhi vs baloch…………………………..Recommend

  • John
    Apr 7, 2011 - 9:45AM

    Shame on all Pakistan people. Nothing more to say.

    Next time when your President, PM, FM, or Ambassador come to a meeting, this will be my question to confront them with.

    People living in UK ask the same.Recommend

  • Rizwan
    Apr 8, 2011 - 9:04AM

    I support the Hindus right to get their marriage registration, NIC cards and what ever rights other communities have in Pakistan. I was not aware of this fact i had lived in the interior sindh and i saw hindus were well established there with thriving businesses, law practices and government jobs. I understand these are the very poor ones of the community who are illiterate like other muslims and christans and due to not having proper knowledge they either did not applied for their papers like it was in old times through out India and other parts of world with no birth certificates and other relevant papers. I hope this issue will be taken care of if put properly as in any part of the world the government officials are the same slackers be it Pakistan, India or in the developed world.

    RizwanRecommend

  • Nobody
    May 10, 2011 - 7:50AM

    @Sonu:
    You should be ashmed of yourself for saying that. Recommend

  • Nobody
    May 10, 2011 - 8:04AM

    @Bharat:
    Call me crazy, but I have a feeling Sonu is an Indian. I’ve seen that sentiment more common among Indians who express their feelings against Pakistan by stating that any Hindu “crazy” enough to stay back in Pakistan “deserves this treatment.” It’s more of a cheap (and slightly unclear) shot at Pakistan, not Hindus. Atleast that’s been the case up until now, but Sonu may be one to break the mold.
    That being said, I, too, am disgusted by my country’s ill treatment of minorities. Had they followed Jinnah’s TRUE vision, it wouldn’t have gotten to this point. Shameful. High time Muslims and Hindus alike fight for the rights of Hindus (and all minorities). They deserve rights as any other Pakistani (although, arguably, the rights of ALL Pakistani’s are in a tug of war of their own currently), irrespective of religion. Cheers. Recommend

  • Nobody
    May 10, 2011 - 8:06AM

    @Ravi [India]:
    I can tell by your tone how much you like and “respect” any muslim presence in India. Wow, you’re so welcoming to them. Recommend

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