Majority and wish of a girl is necessary in inter- religion or inter- caste marriages

Punjab and Haryana High Court: While hearing upon the petition where the petitioner had prayed to the Court to issue directions to the respondents for the protection of their life and liberty, the Court observed that in cases of inter- caste and inter- religion marriages, the only points that the court seeks to know is that whether the girl has attained majority according to S.3 of Indian Majority Act, 1875 and the consent of the girl.

The Court further observed that the laws of the nation do not prohibit a girl under the age of 18 yrs to fall in love and a minor girl’s desire to marry the one she loves is not an offence under IPC. In case of opposition from parents of the girl, she has the option of persuading her parents and waiting for her to attain majority, but this can only happen if an amicable atmosphere free of coercion and fear prevails in the girl’s house. The Court further observed that when a 17yr old girl who was in love is threatened, she has every right to protect her life and liberty as the Constitution equally protects the minor and the father has no right to harm his daughter or forcibly get her married to someone else against her consent, just because she intends to marry outside religion or caste. Gurvinder Kaur v. State of Punjab, Crl.Misc.No.M-20247 of 2014 (O&M), decided on June 9, 2014    

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