Centre modifies scheme of inter-cast marriage with dalit, removes income cap

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The central government has decided to change their inter-caste marriage law with an offer of giving Rs 2.5 lakh to the newly married couple with at least one Dalit individual.

Earlier, the scheme was meant only for such couples whose was below Rs 5 lakh per annum.  However, in a big push to encourage inter-caste marriages involving dalits, the Union Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment decided to open the scheme for all with no income cap. As per this, the one-time incentive of Rs 2.5 lakh can now be availed by all couples where either the bride or the bridegroom is a Dalit.

The ‘Dr Ambedkar scheme for social Integration through inter caste marriage’ was started in 2013 to bring social equality in the nation. The scheme projects to benefit at least 500 couples per year.

As per restrictions, it should be first marriage and the marriage should be registered under the Hindu Marriages Act. Because of the provision, couples registered under Special Marriages Act couldn’t avail the benefits of the scheme. The Rs 5 lakh income cap was also an impediment– the government has removed it now.

As per new guideline, the ministry has made it mandatory for the couples to have their Aadhaar cards and their bank accounts linked with their Aadhaar numbers.

“Many states that have similar schemes do not have an income limit, so the Centre, too, decided it remove it,” a ministry official was quoted in the report.

Rs 2.5 lakh incentive is intended to laud the “socially bold step” couples are taking and to help them “settle down in the initial phase of their married life”.