PUBLIC INTEREST LITIGATION (PIL)

A compilation of PIL cases in Bangladesh

Case Number: Writ Petition No. 7878 of 2014
Date of filing: 2014/08/30
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Petitioners

1. Bangladesh Legal Aid and Services Trust (BLAST)
2. Naripokkho
3. Bangladesh Mohila Parishad

Respondents

1.Secretary, Ministry of Public Administration

2.Secretary, Ministry of Religious Affairs

3.Director General, Department of Printing and Publications

4.Deputy Director, Bangladesh Forms and Publication

Facts

A petition was filed to challenge Clause 5 of the marriage registration form (kabin-nama) (BG Form Nos. 1600 and 1601), which perpetuates discrimination between women and men and results in violation of Articles 27, 28, 31 and 32 of the Constitution.

BLAST, Naripokkho and Bangladesh Mohila Parishad filed a writ to ensure amendment of the provisions. Muslim marriages are required to be registered in a prescribed form (kabin-nama). These forms in clause no. 5 require a bride to make a statement regarding her marital status and sexual history, specifically stating whether she is কুমার/ বিধবা/ তালাকা (virgin/ widowed/ divorced). However, the groom is not required to make such a statement. These forms also do not require either the bride or the groom to produce any original identification document or photograph to confirm their identity. Only a woman is required to provide her personal information regarding marital status, which is violative of fundamental rights. The inclusion of the word কুমারinstead of অবিবাহিতাviolates women’s personhood and dignity, protected by Article 32 of the Constitution. In addition, the absence of proof of identity of the groom in the kabin-nama and the failure to require a photograph of the groom to be attached in the forms results in obstructing women’s equal access to remedies in case of family disputes and in case of violence by husband, to take recourse to protection of the law.

Rule/Order/Judgment
Date: 14/09/2014


Details

The High Court issued a Rule Nisi upon the respondents to show cause as to why clause No. 5 in the BG Forms No. 1600 and 16001 should not be declared to be without lawful authority and of no legal effect being discriminatory against women. In addition, the respondents were asked to show cause as to why they should not be directed to take necessary steps to amend the aforesaid forms by omitting the use of the word “কুমার”, to ensure that information regarding marital status is required by both men and women, and to impose a mandatory requirement for both the bride and groom to affix their respective photographs to the forms at the time of registration.  

Justices

Ms. Justice Naima Haider

Mr. Justice Md. Jahangir Hossain



Database Last Updated on: 2017-02-12 15:26:45
Area of law
Equality,
Women’s Rights,
Discrimination
Keywords
Amendment of kabin-nama case
Relevant statute

Constitution, Articles 27, 28,31and 32;
Convention on the Elimination of All forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEADAW) 1979;
Muslim Marriages and Divorces (Registration) Act 1974;
Muslim Marriages and Divorces Registration Rules 1974, Rule 28 (1) (a)





Case Number: Writ Petition No. 7878 of 2014
Date of filing: 2014/08/30

Petitioners

1. Bangladesh Legal Aid and Services Trust (BLAST)
2. Naripokkho
3. Bangladesh Mohila Parishad

Respondents

1.Secretary, Ministry of Public Administration

2.Secretary, Ministry of Religious Affairs

3.Director General, Department of Printing and Publications

4.Deputy Director, Bangladesh Forms and Publication

Facts

A petition was filed to challenge Clause 5 of the marriage registration form (kabin-nama) (BG Form Nos. 1600 and 1601), which perpetuates discrimination between women and men and results in violation of Articles 27, 28, 31 and 32 of the Constitution.

BLAST, Naripokkho and Bangladesh Mohila Parishad filed a writ to ensure amendment of the provisions. Muslim marriages are required to be registered in a prescribed form (kabin-nama). These forms in clause no. 5 require a bride to make a statement regarding her marital status and sexual history, specifically stating whether she is কুমার/ বিধবা/ তালাকা (virgin/ widowed/ divorced). However, the groom is not required to make such a statement. These forms also do not require either the bride or the groom to produce any original identification document or photograph to confirm their identity. Only a woman is required to provide her personal information regarding marital status, which is violative of fundamental rights. The inclusion of the word কুমারinstead of অবিবাহিতাviolates women’s personhood and dignity, protected by Article 32 of the Constitution. In addition, the absence of proof of identity of the groom in the kabin-nama and the failure to require a photograph of the groom to be attached in the forms results in obstructing women’s equal access to remedies in case of family disputes and in case of violence by husband, to take recourse to protection of the law.


Rule/Order/Judgment
Date: 14/09/2014:
Details

The High Court issued a Rule Nisi upon the respondents to show cause as to why clause No. 5 in the BG Forms No. 1600 and 16001 should not be declared to be without lawful authority and of no legal effect being discriminatory against women. In addition, the respondents were asked to show cause as to why they should not be directed to take necessary steps to amend the aforesaid forms by omitting the use of the word “কুমার”, to ensure that information regarding marital status is required by both men and women, and to impose a mandatory requirement for both the bride and groom to affix their respective photographs to the forms at the time of registration.  

Justices

Ms. Justice Naima Haider,  
Mr. Justice Md. Jahangir Hossain



Reference

Area of law
Equality,  Women’s Rights,  Discrimination

Keywords
Amendment of kabin-nama case

Relevant statute

Constitution, Articles 27, 28,31and 32;
Convention on the Elimination of All forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEADAW) 1979;
Muslim Marriages and Divorces (Registration) Act 1974;
Muslim Marriages and Divorces Registration Rules 1974, Rule 28 (1) (a)


Related Proceedings
Database Last Updated on: 2017-02-12 15:26:45