Friday, July 19, 2024

Assam government workers banned from second marriages by CM Sarma, regardless of religious approval

Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma has announced a new policy prohibiting second marriages for government employees in Assam, regardless of their religious beliefs. This policy requires individuals to obtain government permission before entering into a second marriage. The decision to enforce this existing law stems from cases where multiple wives of Muslim men have disputed pension rights. The regulation is a reminder of a service rule established 58 years ago, which bars individuals from marrying again without government consent as long as their first spouse is alive.

The circular, without specifying any particular religious group, asserts that this rule applies even to men allowed by personal law to have polygamous marriages. In addition, the notification extends the prohibition to female government employees, preventing them from marrying someone who already has a living husband without government permission. This policy was outlined in an ‘Office Memorandum’ issued by Personnel Additional Chief Secretary Niraj Verma on October 20, although it was only made public recently. It is in accordance with Rule 26 of The Assam Civil Services (Conduct) Rules 1965.

The circular emphasizes that the disciplinary authority may initiate departmental proceedings for significant penalties, including compulsory retirement, against those who violate this rule, deeming such actions as severe misconduct on the part of government servants with significant social implications. The ‘Office Memorandum’ also instructs authorities to take appropriate legal actions when such cases come to light.

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