Speaking at a mass marriage registration camp organised by the Commission in the city, she observed that marriages, especially in the Hindu community, were not registered because of the lack of awareness about its importance. Though weddings were usually very elaborate, the process of registration, which did not exceed half-an-hour, was often overlooked, she said. The marriage would become legally valid only if it was registered.
“Especially, in a patriarchal society such as ours where women were always considered inferior to men, there is a need to stress the importance of registering the marriage,” she said. If there was no proof to show that a person was legally married he or she could marry again and only the one which was registered would be considered official. It could also prevent child marriage and domestic violence. The Commission would continue its compulsory marriage registration campaign throughout the State and help the public, especially women, understand the legal implications of non-registration, Ms. Ramathal said.
District Collector V. Palanikumar said incompatibility among couples was increasing today and it was more among the educated youth. The number of people seeking divorce was on the rise too. Crimes related to dowry were common. In such times, registration of marriage offered protection. Earlier, when the joint family system prevailed, young couples had the support of a large family. With the emergence of nuclear families, conflicts between couples were a common feature and the marriage itself was unstable. Both man and woman had equal responsibility in maintaining the balance of a family, he said.
Mr. Palanikumar urged the families and girls not to encourage the practice of dowry. Universities and colleges should promote value education and teach the students the values necessary to lead a happy life, he said. More than 500 marriages were registered at the camp. Mayor R. Venkatachalam, Vice-Chancellor of Avinashilignam University Saroja Prabhakaran, and Co-ordinator of the State Women’s Commission G.P. Godhanavalli attended.