Andaman and Nicobar Islands Anand Marriages Registration Rules 2017

In a welcome step, the UT administration has notified the Andaman and Nicobar Islands Anand Marriages Registration Rules 2017 to allow registration of marriages in the Sikh community under the Anand Marriage Act instead of the Hindu Marriage Act. As per the rules, The Lt. Governor, by a notification in the official gazette, can authorise a District Registrar or a Registrar of Marriages for the areas specified in the notification for registration of Anand Marriages, commonly known as Anand Karaj, solemnized with the Union Territory of Andaman and Nicobar Islands. 

For the purpose of registration, parties will be required to prepare a memorandum in duplicate in the prescribed form and submit it to the Registrar along with documents to prove the solemnization of marriage along with a fee of Rs 50 within 30 days from the date of marriage. For registration of marriages solemnized before the notification of the rules, parties will have to submit the memorandum within a period of one year from the date of commencement of the regulations. The memorandum will have to be signed by both the parties to the marriage along with signatures of two witnesses. Parties who don’t register such marriages within the specified period will have to apply by submitting the memorandum to the Registrar in Form II and a Declaration in Form II attested by a Gazetted Officer, Member of Parliament, Member of Local Self Government Institutions or Notary.

To remove doubts as to the validity of the marriage ceremony common among the Sikhs called Anand, the Anand Marriage Act 1909 (7 of 1909) was enacted in 1909 which was subsequently amended vide Anand Marriage (Amendment) Bill, 2012, in the year 2012. Parties to the marriage, whose marriage has been registered under the Act, shall not be required to get their marriage registered under any other law in force. According to report, the Sikh community across the country have been facing problems abroad because while they identify themselves as Sikhs, their marriages are registered under the Hindu Marriage Act.