Clergy seeks time to scan marriage bill
ISLAMABAD: Bishops and pastors from across the country have sought two weeks from the Ministry of Human Rights to deliberate over the proposed Christian Marriage and Divorce Bill, 2016, it emerged on Wednesday.
The ministry had earlier proposed Christian Marriage and Divorce Bill, 2016 after making amendments to the Christian Marriage Act, 1872 and Christian Divorce Act, 1869.
Christian clergymen along with minority lawmakers had already opposed the ministry’s initiative during a consultative meeting and urged the ministry to review its decision.
Under the proposed bill, the age of the parties to be married should not be less than 18 years. Additionally, neither of the parties intending to marry should have a spouse living at the time of the marriage. Similarly, each church shall have the right to solemnise a marriage according to its own rites, principles or rituals. Bishops agreed to set a minimum age for marriage.
A senior official of the ministry, requesting anonymity, said that the Bishops were supposed to forward their suggestions on September 10 but haven’t done so far which has caused the delay.