Lawfully yours: By Retd Justice K Chandru
The move to raise the age was thoughtless and could be counterproductive. It is an irony that when at 18 they can vote and elect their leaders, they can’t choose their husbands at the same age.
Move to raise marriageable age for women thoughtless
Q. With the government proposing to raise the minimum legal age of marriage for women from 18 to 21, will the new Act be above all personal laws; i.e. will the age limit be raised for all females regard- less of their religion? Also, instead of stopping at that, can’t the gov- ernment widen the ambit of the proposal to also affirm the principle of gender neutrality, by making the minimum marital age for women the same as that for men?
— Kalai Subramaniam, Madipakkama
A. Now the minimum age for women to get married has been raised to 21 on par with men. Earlier it was 18 years for women and 21 for men. It will apply to all, irrespective of their religion and personal laws. While some women’s groups have welcomed it, some other groups have opposed it. Even when the age was 18, many child marriages were taking place in our country. With the raising of age, the numbers are bound to go up. The move to raise the age was thoughtless and could be counterproductive. It is an irony that when at 18 they can vote and elect their leaders, they can’t choose their husbands at the same age.
Fishing in int’l waters a guaranteed right, Coast Guard should ensure it
Q. Won’t the matters that pertain to Katchatheevu, which is only 18 nautical miles off the Indian coast, come within the ambit of Indi- an courts? By the same logic, fishing in the waters around it and the safety of Tamil Nadu fishermen? With politicians not seeming to be worried about the plight of these hapless people, is there any way the highest court of the land can intervene, or is there an international forum where the issue, including ceding of the island to Sri Lanka, can be taken up?
— Mohamed Bilal, Neelangarai
A. Katchatheevu has become a vexing issue. The solution, however, is not in courts. Already one case is pending before the Supreme Court in this regard. India ceded Katchatheevu island to Sri Lanka reserving certain rights for our people. That ceding has become final. We will have to learn to live with our neighbours. Though it may sometimes look like a loss, peace in this region should be a gain. Fishing in international waters is a guaranteed right, and the same must be ensured by the Coast Guards.