Children can now use either the mother's or father's name in all official documents

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A government resolution issued by the department said, “Children can use either their mother’s or father’s name.” This is certainly a progressive step

There is good news for women and children in Maharashtra.

The Women and Child Welfare department in the state made a major announcement involving official documentation for women and children. It states:

  • Women can use either father's name or husband's name in all official documents made in the state
  • Children can now use either the mother's or the father's name in all their official documents.

A government resolution issued by the department said, “Children can use either their mother’s or father’s name.” This is a progressive step in a nation that still asks for father's name in all documents.

This announcement is in accordance with the third women's policy, 2014, cleared by the state cabinet in March.

In fact, it comes close on heels to last month's news where the Delhi High Court observed that women could now only use their mother's name to get a fresh passport and no longer needed to declare their father's name.

If you face problems...

The department also announced that if a woman faces any problem in registering official documents using her mother's name, she can complaint to the district collector.

For issuing fresh passports...

For documents such as a passport, here's what the Delhi High Court said:

“Can insist upon the name of the biological father in the passport only if it is a requirement in law, like standing instructions, manuals, etc. In the absence of any provision making it mandatory to mention the name of one’s biological father in the passport, the respondents cannot insist upon the same," said Justice Manmohan.

He had also observed, “This court also takes judicial notice of the fact that families of single parents are on the increase due to various reasons like unwed mothers, sex workers, surrogate mothers, rape survivors, children abandoned by father and also children born through IVF technology.”

With inputs from PTI.

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Written by

Deepshikha Punj

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