Minister for Women and Child Development Maneka Gandhi has requested the Ministry of External Affairs to amend rules for issuing passports and not make father's name a mandatory requirement, reported PTI. The request came after a single mother, Priyanka Gupta, tried to get her daughter's passport issued without her father's name in it, after which she started a petition on change.org.
Gandhi tweeted that she had raised the request with Minister of External Affairs Sushma Swaraj. "Have received petitions where mother/child have insisted that name of the father should not be mentioned in passport. The petitions involved cases in which the father had abandoned the mother, and the court had granted custody of the child to the mother,” the minister said.
In a May 2016 ruling, the Delhi High Court had said it was not essential to mention the name of the father if the mother and child so desired. Gupta started the petition after the passport office reportedly insisted that her daughter mention her father's name, according to The Times of India. In her petition, she narrated how she brought up her daughter single-handedly after her husband abandoned them because she gave birth to a girl. The petition soon garnered 43,000 signatures from single parents, reported The News Minute.