• Short Summary

    THE MULTIRACIAL STATE OF SINGAPORE IS SOON TO HAVE NEW MARRIAGE LAWS.

    THE PEOPLES ACTION PARTY?

  • Description

    THE MULTIRACIAL STATE OF SINGAPORE IS SOON TO HAVE NEW MARRIAGE LAWS.

    THE PEOPLES ACTION PARTY GOVERNMENT WHICH CAME TO POWER EARLY IN JUNE HAS INCLUDED IN ITS LEGISLATIVE PROGRAMME A BILL TO MAKE MONOGAMY COMPULSORY EXCEPT FOR MUSLIMS.

    IN SINGAPORE, MUSLIMS MAKE UP ABOUT 13 PERCENT OF THE POPULATION. THEY ARE MAINLY MALAYS AND FOLLOWERS OF ISLAM FROM INDIA.

    THE PEOPLES ACTION PARTY HAS SAID IT WILL NOT INTERFERE WITH THE CUSTOMS OF THE MUSLIMS WHO ARE ALLOWED BY THEIR RELIGION TO HAVE NOT MORE THAN FOUR WIVES AT A TIME.

    IN THE MUSLIM RELIGION THERE IS HOWEVER A PROVISO THAT ALL THE WIVES MUST BE TREATED EQUALLY.

    THOSE TO COME UNDER THE NEW LAW WOULD BE HINDUS WHO CONSTITUTE THE BULK OF 8 PERCENT INDIAN POPULATION AND CHINESE WHO MAKE 75 PERCENT OF THE PEOPLE OF SINGAPORE. ONLY ABOUT FIVE PERCENT OF SINGAPORE IS CHRISTIAN NATURALLY MONOGAMOUS.

    HINDUS ARE NOT PROHIBITED FROM POLYGAMY. THOUGH HINDUS ARE TECHNICALLY FREE TO HAVE MANY WIVES, HIGH COST OF LIVING AND SOCIAL OPINION USUALLY DETERS THEN FROM PRACTISING POLYGAMY. HINDU RELIGIOUS IDEAL IS MONOGAMY.

    BUT THE CHINESE WHO ARE BUDDHISTS AND CONFUCIAN OR FOLLOW OTHER NON-CHRISTIAN RELIGIOUS DO PRACTISE POLYGAMY ON A WIDER SCALE. IF POLYGAMY IS ECONOMICALLY POSSIBLE. CHINESE TAKE MANY WIVES. HAVING MANY WIVES OR KEEPING MISTRESSES IS NOT LOOKED DOWN UPON BY CHINESE SOCIETY.

    THE PAP WANTS TO PUT AN END TO POLYGAMY. WHEN A SIMILAR ATTEMPT WAS MADE IN SINGAPORE A FEW YEARS AGO BY THE LAST GOVERNMENT: THE HINDU OPINION WAS AGAINST THE MONOGAMY BILL, PRIMARILY BECAUSE MONOGAMY WOULD LEAD TO DIVORCE AND IN THE HINDU SOCIETY DIVORCE IS UNTHINKABLE. HINDU MARRIAGE IS MORE A SOCIAL AND RELIGIOUS AFFAIR THAN A LEGAL CONTRACT. THE GOVERNMENT SHELVED THE BILL.

    NO ATTEMPT WAS SO WAR MADE TO BRING MONOGAMY TO THE CHINESE. PAP GOVERNMENT IS TRYING IT FIRST AND IS FREE TO MAKE THE LAW AS IT HAS 43 VOTES IN THE 52 SEAT ASSEMBLY.

    THE SINGAPORE COUNCIL FOR WOMEN, WHICH HAS ASKED FOR A MONOGAMY BILL FOR QUITE SOME TIME, IS HAPPY ABOUT THE PAP MOVE.

    THE COUNCIL IS MADE UP OF MIDDLE AND UPPER CLASS SOCIETY WOMEN. THE LAST TIME, TWO YEARS AGO, WHEN IT CALLED FOR A PUBLIC MEETING TO PRESS THE GOVERNMENT FOR MONOGAMY LAW, ABOUT 40 PEOPLE ATTENDED IT, 30 OF THEM MEN.

    MRS. ???RIN FOZDAR, A PARSEE BY BIRTH FROM BOMBAY HAS BEEN IN SINGAPORE FOR A DECADE, AND IS A WORKER FOR WOMEN. PARSEES, ORIGINALLY BAILING FROM PERSIA AND BELONGING TO ZOROASTRIAN RELIGION ARE NOW MOSTLY NEAR BOMBAY IN INDIA. MRS. FOZDAR, A WIDOW, IS HOWEVER MISSIONARY FOR BAHAI RELIGION, AN OFF SHOOT OF ISLAM.

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    VLVA4A8V6B3AB3DC5X2D8X7JXGPZJ
    Media URN:
    VLVA4A8V6B3AB3DC5X2D8X7JXGPZJ
    Group:
    Reuters - Source to be Verified
    Archive:
    Reuters
    Issue Date:
    22/07/1959
    Sound:
    Unknown
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Stock:
    Black & White
    Duration:
    00:02:25:00
    Time in/Out:
    /
    Canister:
    N/A

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