15 Sep 2023 9:06 AM GMT
The Karnataka High Court has allowed a petition seeking a direction to the civic body to insert the petitioner's name in her birth certificate observing that 'a mistake by the parents cannot put the child at a disadvantage'. Justice Suraj Govindaraj thereby quashed the endorsement issued by the civic body rejecting her application holding that the identity and the paternity of the petitioner...
The Karnataka High Court has allowed a petition seeking a direction to the civic body to insert the petitioner's name in her birth certificate observing that 'a mistake by the parents cannot put the child at a disadvantage'.
Justice Suraj Govindaraj thereby quashed the endorsement issued by the civic body rejecting her application holding that the identity and the paternity of the petitioner were not disputed and hence she could not be denied a birth certificate with her name on it.
“When the identity of the petitioner is not in dispute, the paternity is not in dispute, the petitioner cannot be denied a birth certificate with her name on it when several other documents issued to the petitioner bear the name of her parents.”
The petitioner was born on 28.4.2000 in Bangalore and in her birth certificate, only her parents' names were incorporated and not that of the petitioner.
Recently, she was required to place her birth certificate on record for employment purposes following which the petitioner made an application to the respondent to insert her name in the birth certificate and issue one containing her name.
However, the request was rejected on the ground that as per the instruction issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs, a 15-year period had been provided for entering the name of the person born in the birth certificate, if not already entered into and the said 15 year period had expired in 2015. Although this was extended for another 5 years, this had also expired in 2020.
As per Rule 10 of the Karnataka Registration of Births and Deaths Rules 1999, where the birth of any child has been registered without a name, the parent or guardian of such child shall within 12 months from the date of registration of birth of the child give information regarding the name of the child to the Registrar either orally or in writing. In terms of proviso to Rule 10 (1), the information given after 12 months but within a period of 15 years could be taken into consideration for purposes of such entry.
Upon considering the arguments, the bench observed,
“The birth certificate which has been issued and produced at Annexure-A does not indicate any requirement on part of the parents to comply with Rule 10 and/or proviso thereof, nor does it indicate any obligation on part of the person born to comply with Rule 10 on such person attaining majority.”
Thus, the Court took the view that it would not be permissible now to deny the petitioner the insertion of her name in the birth certificate merely because her parents had not furnished such details and/or that there is a delay in furnishing the said details.
It was also expressed that the communication of the Ministry of Home Affairs is an internal communication between the Ministry of Home Affairs and the Corporation authorities and not one which is made known to the petitioner.
The bench added,
“Even in the said communication the Ministry of Home Affairs has also categorically indicated that it is the responsibility of the Corporation to make known the requirement of Rule 10 to everyone and give wide publicity thereof. One basic way of making known the same would have been to incorporate the said requirement in the birth certificate issued without a name which has not been done.”
Then it found that no details had been made available regarding the manner in which the corporation had informed the general public of the said requirement. The Court also noted that the petitioner was residing outside Karnataka, thus any information made known in Karnataka cannot be presumed to be to her knowledge.
Noting that the petitioner was minor throughout the period of 15 years time period, it said that the period of 15 years does not make any sense for the reason that in that 15 years, the child would continue to be a minor. It is only after the child becomes a major, any action could be taken by the child to incorporate his or her name in the Birth Certificate, the Court observed.
“Can the petitioner be made to suffer on account of a default on part of her parents and deprive her of a birth certificate for eternity.”
Accordingly, the court directed the respondent to issue the birth certificate in 30 days and also directed it to incorporate the requirements of Rule 10 of the Karnataka Registration of Births and Deaths Rules in all birth certificates issued henceforth.
As such, the petition was allowed.
Case Title: Fathima Richelle Mather v. Registrar of Births and Deaths & Commissioner, BBMP
Appearance: Advocate Rakesh B Bhatt for Petitioner.
Advocate Pawan Kumar for R1.
Citation: 2023 LiveLaw (Kar) 356
Case No: WRIT PETITION NO. 18413 OF 2023
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