04 Jun 2021  |   05:33am IST

CM drops pre-marriage counselling proposal

BJP, surprised at the proposal, objected to making this mandatory
CM drops pre-marriage counselling proposal

Team Herald

MAPUSA/PANJIM: Chief Minister Dr Pramod Sawant on Thursday said that the proposal for pre-marriage counselling in the State will be dropped. The Chief Minister was addressing the media after attending video conference with party workers. 

“We were supposed to take forward the pre-marriage counselling and make it compulsory in the State but now the proposal will be dropped,” Sawant said.

Earlier, the party objected to the pre-marriage counselling proposal stating it would create hassles for couples heading for marriage.

“We are opposed to the idea of pre-marriage counseling. The party has already taken up the issue with the Chief Minister,” BJP Goa president Sadanand Shet Tanavade had said and added, “Such a process of going through pre-marriage counseling will create hassles for the couples before their wedding.”

Law Minister Nilesh Cabral earlier this week had said that pre-marriage counseling between the two signatures during the marriage registration process would be made mandatory in the State considering rise in divorce cases.

Cabral’s suggestion for mandatory pre-marital counseling of couples registering for marriage had not gone well with the BJP, Goa Unit.

 “We are coming up with a new policy to make pre-marital counseling mandatory in the State. We may also rope in religious institutions for the same,” Cabral had said.

Tanavade clarified that Goa’s divorce rate is 0.18 per cent, that is, 18 cases per 1000 marriages as against 0.24 per cent in the rest of the country.  

“The decision (of government) is only going to trouble the people of Goa as they will have to make trips to the government departments. The parents and elderly members of the family are capable enough of counseling the couple,” the State BJP president had said. 

As per tentative data, around 10,000 marriages are registered annually which means around 20,000 people would have to undergo pre-marital counseling. The party has urged CM not to consider the proposal by its minister.

Present for the CM’s meeting were Tanavade, Union Minister and North Goa MP Shripad Naik, Rajya Sabha MP Vinay Tendulkar, State general secretary Damu Naik, North Goa District president Mahanand Asnodkar and other karyakartas.

Sawant also felicitated Mapusa MLA Joshua Peter De Souza on being appointed as National General Secretary of BJP Minority Morcha.