SHILLONG, Oct 26: The Khasi Hills Autonomous District Council has passed the KHAD (Khasi Social Custom of Lineage) (First Amendment) Bill, 2018 which seeks to prohibit mixed marriage among Khasi women and taking surname of the father’s clan.
The Bill laid down conditions, including marriages, for which a Khasi tribal has to follow to ensure that his/her offspring also will be considered a tribal.
It also clearly defines the Khasi Custom of Lineage where a Khasi person takes his/her surname from the mother side whereas the Khasi custom of marriage is based on the unique “tip kur tip kha” principle (knowing and upholding the relationship between mother’s clans and that of the father) which has been existence in marriages between Khasi Tribe.
Apart from striping a Khasi woman of her tribal status upon her marriage with a non-Khasi man and children born out of such wedlock will not enjoy the constitutional protections that come with it, the Bill also strips a tribal Khasi man of his tribal status if he takes the surname from his father.
“Any Khasi who takes the Clan Title of his father or himself or his children shall no longer be a Khasi and he and/or his children shall be disqualified from all privileges, status and benefits as a Khasi,” the Bill states.
However, it maintained that this provision shall not apply in case of ‘Ring Bia’ or ‘Shaw Bhoi’ which is a customary practice by certain clans in Ri Bhoi District.
Meanwhile, the KHADC also passed the United Khasi – Jaintia Hills District (Establishment of Town Committee) (Second Amendment) Rules, 2018 for regulating building construction within the council’s jurisdiction and the Khasi Hills Autonomous District (Constitution of Subordinate Council of Traditional Chiefs and Headmen) Rules, 2018, which seeks to retain, protect, conserve and preserve the socio-cultural ethos of Khasi society and the traditional system of self-governance.