IHC declares arbitration council’s permission mandatory for second marriage

ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court declared on Sunday the permission from the arbitration council mandatory for second marriage, regardless of the husband having prior permission from the first wife.

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In a 12-page statement issued today by IHC’s Chief Justice Athar Minallah, the court declared mandatory to take the arbitration council’s permission prior to the second marriage.

The court ruled, “a man who intends to contract another marriage during the subsistence of an existing marriage has to observe the procedure and fulfill the conditions prescribed by the legislature otherwise the consequences of imprisonment or fine or both could ensue.”

According to Muslim Family Laws Ordinance, 1961: “During the subsistence of an existing marriage, no man shall contract another marriage except with the previous permission in writing of the arbitration council.”

According to Muslim Family Laws Ordinance, 1961: “During the subsistence of an existing marriage, no man shall contract another marriage except with the previous permission in writing of the arbitration council.”

The IHC was hearing a case related to a Kashmiri citizen Liaquat Ali Mir’s acquittal, declaring its earlier decision null and void.

Under the Muslim Family Law Ordinance 1961, the person doing second marriage without permission is liable to punishment and fine, stated the court.

“The factors required to be taken into consideration by the Arbitration Council in granting permission for contracting a subsequent marriage have been prescribed in subsections (2), (3) and (4) of section 6 of the Ordinance of 1961.”

Making it mandatory to obtain permission from the Arbitration Council for an already married man before contracting a subsequent marriage, the court ruled, “a husband who contracts another marriage during the subsistence of an earlier one in contravention of the provisions of the Ordinance of 1961 definitely exposes himself of the risk of being imprisoned or fined or to both.”

The court made it evident that despite the first wife’s agreement if the arbitration council disagrees with the decision then the person will be liable to punishment.

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