The name “Johan” would represent the wishes of the mother of the child and the name “Sachin”, as a surname would satisfy the requirement of the father of the child as the said name would identify the child as his, the court said.
Finally, the boy got a name, thanks to the Kerala High Court which took unto itself the bounden duty of the parents to name their child, as they were busy fighting.
As relationship strained after the birth of second child, the inter-religion couple, among other battles in family court, also started fighting to name the child.
Before the municipality, the father wanted his child to be named as ‘Abhinav Sachin’, as this was the name that was given to the child on the 28th-day ceremony, while the mother stated that the child was baptised with the name “Johan Mani Sachin”.
The Registrar of Births & Deaths of the Municipality took a stand that in the absence of a consensus between the parents of the child, the municipality could not assign a name to the child for the purposes of issuing a birth certificate in respect of the child.
Finally, both approached the high court aggrieved by the inaction on the part of the municipality to issue a birth certificate showing the name of the child as per their respective wishes.
Justice AK Jayasankaran Nambiar observed that though the parties are in a matrimonial dispute that is pending before the family court, it is an urgent requirement that a name is given to the child so that he can be admitted to a school, where a birth certificate would be a pre-requisite for admission.
Finally, the mother, through her counsel, submitted before the court that she is ready to give up the name 'Mani' in a gesture of reconciliation. However, the father would insist on the name “Abhinav” being retained in lieu of “Johan”.
Justice Nambiar then said: “Taking note of the differences between the parents, I am of the view that, as a conciliatory measure and with a view to pacify both the parents of the child, it would be in the interests of justice to accede to the wishes of both the parents to the extent possible and therefore, assign the name “Johan Sachin” to the second child of the petitioners in both these writ petitions. The name “Johan” would represent the wishes of the mother of the child and the name “Sachin”, as a surname, would satisfy the requirement of the father of the child as the said name would identify the child as his.”
The court said this course of action would be in the interests of the minor child, who is now in the custody of the mother, with occasional custody granted to the father as per the directions of the family court. The municipality was directed to issue a birth certificate showing the name of the child as “Johan Sachin”.