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Runaway Couple- Court's Protection Order Should Not Be Made As A Ritual Of A Valid Marriage: Madhya Pradesh High Court

Sparsh Upadhyay
15 Aug 2021 11:09 AM GMT
Runaway Couple- Courts Protection Order Should Not Be Made As A Ritual Of A Valid Marriage: Madhya Pradesh High Court
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The Madhya Pradesh High Court recently observed that while it is true that two major persons are entitled to live their life as per their own wishes, but the protection order should not be made as a ritual of a valid marriage.The Bench of Justice Gurpal Singh Ahluwalia was dealing with a plea by a runaway couple who sought protection against the family members of the Girl who were opposed...

The Madhya Pradesh High Court recently observed that while it is true that two major persons are entitled to live their life as per their own wishes, but the protection order should not be made as a ritual of a valid marriage.

The Bench of Justice Gurpal Singh Ahluwalia was dealing with a plea by a runaway couple who sought protection against the family members of the Girl who were opposed to their marriage, however, they did not specify any details regarding the alleged threat.

The case of the petitioners

The petitioners submitted that they have performed marriage voluntarily and they are of marriageable age but the parents of the girl are not happy and that they, with the help of criminals, are torturing them.

It was further mentioned in the writ petition that the oral information of marriage was given to the higher authorities of police, however, it was claimed, no security had been provided to the petitioners.

On the other hand, the State argued that the petitioners have not sought any protection, but they are seeking that no FIR should be registered against them.

Court's observations

At the outset, the Court noted that in the writ petition, there was no whisper of any incident which might have taken place with the petitioners, amounting to any offence.

The Court also noted they did not specify the details as to on what date the father of the Girl had ever tried to threaten the petitioners by taking help of criminals. The Court also observed that they did not even approach the police authorities by making any complaint either in person or through registered post.

Thus, in this backdrop, the Court noted thus:

"It is clear that the petitioners have taken the law laid down by the Supreme Court in the case of Lata Singh Vs. State of U.P. reported in (2006) 5 SCC 475, as a necessary ritual for a valid marriage."

Here it is important to note that in the Lata Singh ruling, the Supreme Court had said that persons undergoing inter-faith marriages can't be harassed or threatened, even if their parents don't approve of the marriage.

In this backdrop, the Court called the attitude of the petitioners, a sheer misuse of the process of law and further remarked thus:

"It is true that two major persons are entitled to live their life as per their own wishes and nobody has a right to interfere in their married life, but the protection order should not be made as a ritual of a valid marriage. Under Hindu law, Saptpadi is a ritual for a valid marriage or registration of marriage under the Special Marriage Act or if marriage is performed in accordance with any special statute or in accordance with the custom, would be a valid marriage."

Case title - Monika Tiwari and anr. Vs. State of MP and ors.

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