New Delhi: A Bill seeking to give the wife a clearly defined share in husband's immovable residential property was on Monday deferred in the Rajya Sabha. Law Minister Salman Khurshid said his ministry has tried to find a middle path amid two extreme views expressed regarding The Marriage Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2012.

He said though he is ready with the reply which was earlier debated in the Upper House, if members want more consultation on the issue he has no problem in deferring the passage of the Bill. Last week the Union Cabinet had taken up fresh amendments to the Marriage Laws (Amendment) Bill introduced in the Rajya Sabha earlier this month.

The government also decided to retain the mandatory six-month cooling-off period, which the bill had proposed to do away with in case of divorce with mutual consent. However, to waive the cooling period, both the parties will have to move the application together. Once the divorce is granted, the woman will have to move an application to get share in her husband's property as part of the settlement.

Keeping in mind the demand of the opposition, it has now been decided to give the wife and children a clearly defined share in the husband's "immovable residential property" in case of a split.

Sensing the mood of the House, Khurshid had deferred his reply to the Bill on May 2 in the Upper House. Naresh Agrawal (SP) said many women groups have expressed reservation about the legislation and sought the Bill be deferred for more consultation.


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