November 26, 2017
While letter is sought from Groom’s side they don’t insist on such a document from the Bride’s side.
If you want to get your marriage registered, it isn’t just your spouse’s consent that matters.
Registration offices in Chennai & many neighboring districts are demanding consent letters from the groom’s parents.
What’s more weird, they do not insist on such a document from the bride’s side.
Earlier this week, a 25-year-old woman of Chennai decided to get her marriage registered. She, her parents, husband and his parents went to Thiruporur registration office with documents mandated under TN Registration of Marriages Act, 2009.
On arrival, the officials asked her to produce a Letter of consent from the groom’s dad. “They also claimed my father-in-law’s letter had to be notarized else the marriage wouldn’t be registered,” she said.
When media did some fact checking, all the officials unanimously agreed they seek such Consent letters. 1 official in a registration office in Kancheepuram claimed she actually sought consent letters from parents on both sides to prevent “illegal” weddings.
The official said that she started insisting on such letters ever since “Supreme Court passed some order in this regard”. If the couple fails to produce the letter, she would hold an inquiry & talk to the parents. “It’s up to the parents to stop the wedding. If they do not get back, then we do the registration.”
The official of Thiruporur town panchayat, admitted he had asked for the letter & justified it, claiming he was acting on a “Circular issued by the office of Inspector General of Registration few months ago”.
However, the Inspector General of Registrations J Kumaragurubaran denied the existence of any such circular.
“Registration officials can’t insist on parent’s consent. We’ll warn them if they force couples for it,” he said. But he added that the Registrar has the right to refuse to register the marriage if he/she finds the documents suspicious.
Vaikunt Ramesh*, in his mid-twenties & his girlfriend decided to get married last year, but didn’t want to inform their parents. The couple, along with friends visited the registration office in Nungambakkam where they too were asked to produce consent letter. However, he said he got around the problem by paying a bribe of few thousand rupees.
“We were scared that they might go to the police, that’s why we decided to pay the speed money,” he said alleging that officials at the registration office deliberately make the procedure cumbersome untill you are frustrated & do not mind having a lighter wallet so as to celebrate the union in peace.