Parliament has cleared the Personal Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2018. The bill aims
to remove leprosy- a chronic neuro-muscular disorder- as a ground for divorce.
seeks to amend (a) the Divorce Act, 1869, (b) the Dissolution of Muslim
Marriage Act, 1939, (c) the Special Marriage Act, 1954, (d) the Hindu Marriage
Act, 1955, and (e) the Hindu Adoptions and Maintenance Act, 1956. These
acts lay down provisions related to marriage, divorce, and separation of Indian
citizens of different communities.
Human Rights Commission, Law commission and judgements of various courts had underlined
the need to amend the laws to remove discrimination against persons suffering
from leprosy-a disease that is now curable.
is also in line with UN General Assembly Resolution of 2010 on the
‘Elimination of discrimination against persons affected by leprosy and their
family members’- a resolution to which India is a signatory.