Hindu Marriage Act: Overview
The Hindu Marriage Act of 1955 was created with the intention of protecting the rights to marriage for Hindu brides and grooms who are united by the sacred tie of matrimony at any ceremony. The type of ceremony is not specified by law because there are numerous ways for a man and a woman to do this religious act.
This legislation was proposed as a result of numerous instances when both men and women were terrified or embarrassed as a result of fraud cases involving marriage. Anyone who is a Hindu, Jain, Sikh, or Buddhist and is not a Muslim, Christian, Parsi, or Jew or is subject to another law, as well as anyone who is not a member of those groups, is bound by this legislation.
Any person who is a Hindu by birth or by religion is subject to this regulation. In Section 2 of the Hindu Marriage Act, a comprehensive definition of a Hindu is provided.
What is the Hindu View on Marriage?
Marriage is regarded as a sacred union in Hinduism. The state plays no part in several Hindu marriage systems because marriage has always been a personal matter between two people. According to this established framework, marriage is without a doubt the most significant turning point in a Hindu’s life and the most significant of all their “sanskaras” (life-cycle rituals).
The Hindu Marriage Act was passed by the Congress government in 1955, and the 498A Marriage Act was introduced in 1983. In 2000, the Special Marriage Act was passed.
The passage of such legislation for marriage, inheritance, and adoption was therefore met with vehement religious opposition. The provision of divorce, which is abhorrent to Hinduism, received the most opposition.
The idea that daughters and sons should inherit equally, regardless of whether the daughter was married or not, was also challenged. Contrary to the Hindu conception of family, married daughters were considered to be members of their husband’s families rather than their fathers.
What are the conditions for a Hindu Marriage?
If the requirements are met, a Hindu couple’s marriage will be solemnized.
- There shouldn’t be a live spouse for the couple throughout the wedding.
- Due to mental insanity, none of the couples is unable to consent to the marriage.
- The members of neither of the couples should have any mental illnesses that would preclude them from getting married and having kids.
- Neither of the partners should experience epileptic seizures or episodes of insanity.
- At the time of their wedding, the bride must be at least 18 years old and the groom must be at least 21.
- The couple shouldn’t be together unless their custom forbids them from getting married.
- Unless their custom forbids it, the pair shouldn’t be sapindas (cousins).
Hindu Marriage Ceremonies
Hindu marriages are performed in accordance with the traditional rites and traditions of the couple. The saptapadi, in which the bridegroom and bride walk seven steps in front of the sacred fire, is one of the rituals and ceremonies. When the seventh stage is fulfilled, the marriage is legally bound.
Registration Process of Hindu Marriages
The State Government has put in place regulations that offer information about their marriage and the requirements that are listed in the Hindu Marriage Register as proof for Hindu marriages. The State Government determines that, depending on the circumstances, entering the information listed in subsection (1) will be required in the State.
However, breaking this would result in a INR 25 fine for the offender. At appropriate times, the Hindu Marriage Register must be made available for examination and will be used as proof of statements. Upon payment of the required fee, the Registrar grants this. The failure to enter the information won’t have any impact on the legitimacy of the Hindu marriage.
Restitution of Conjugal Rights
When a spouse withdraws from society without a valid reason, the offended party may file a petition with the District Court asking for the restoration of conjugal rights. If there is no legal requirement for approving the application, the court may allow the return of conjugal rights after conducting an investigation to confirm the facts stated in the petition.
Hindu Marriage Judicial Separation
Any couple, whether they were married before or after the passage of this Act, must submit a petition for judicial separation in accordance with subsection (1) of Section 13. There is no requirement that the petitioner lives with the respondent after a judicial separation has been granted. If there is not enough truth in the statement, the court may reject the petition.
Some Important Sections of the Hindu Marriage Act are:
This ordinance was designed to avoid the various repercussions that were common due to the immaturity of Hindu marriage law during British rule.
Hindu Marriage Act Section 5
According to Sections 5(ii) and (iii) of the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955, Hindu marriage is more of a result of mutual consent than it is a result of religion.
Hindu Marriage Act Section 2
According to Section 2 of the Hindu Marriage Act of 1955, marriages between Hindus in any form, regardless of caste or creed, or between anyone who is subject to the provisions of the Act, such as Buddhists, Sikhs, Jains, and so-called Hindus, are considered Hindu Marriages.
Hindu Marriage Act Section 3
The prohibited degrees of ties that were outlined in the Smritis were repealed by Section 3 of the Hindu Marriage Act of 1955, and new prohibited degrees of relationships, including as One cannot wed his brother’s spouse. However, divorcee and widowed women are exempt from this regulation.
Provisions under Section 5 and Section 17 of the Hindu Marriage Act
Hindus are severely forbidden from entering into several marriages by the Hindu Marriage Act of 1955, which incorporated monogamy. According to Sections 5 and 17 of the Hindu Marriage Act of 1955, bigamy and polygamy are severely punished under the Indian Penal Code if proven.
- The Hindu Marriage Act of 1955 does not place any limitations on caste or community. Hence Under this act, marriages between different castes and communities are totally legal.
- The Hindu Marriage Act of 1955 eliminated all legal distinctions between marriages of maidens and widows, and both are now treated equally.
- Only when both the bride and groom are at least 18 years old at the time of marriage, as required by Section 5 of the Hindu Marriage Act of 1955, is a marriage considered legal.
- The Hindu Marriage Act of 1955’s Section 5 specifies the number of requirements that must be met before marriage is deemed legal.
Hindu Marriage Act Section 8
The option to register a marriage under this Act was first introduced in Section 8 of the Hindu Marriage Act of 1955.
Hindu Marriage Act Section 9
The restoration of the conjugal rights of husband and wife who were bound by the Hindu Marriage Act of 1955 was outlined in Section 9.
Hindu Marriage Act Section 15
According to Section 15 of the Hindu Marriage Act of 1955, either party is qualified to remarry following a legal divorce.
Hindu Marriage Act Section 16
Children born as a result of the union are defined as legitimate under Section 16 of the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955, and can subsequently be declared annulled, void, or voidable.
Hindu Marriage Act Section 24
The provision of support pendent lite and for expenditures of legal processes of a divorce is described in Section 24 of the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955.
Hindu Marriage Act Section 25
The comprehensive definition of permanent alimony and maintenance for the alliances under this Act is defined in Section 25 of the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955.
Hindu Marriage Act Section 26
The rules for custody, maintenance, and education of minor children during and after legal proceedings for divorce are outlined in Section 26 of the Hindu Marriage Act of 1955.
What are Voidable Marriages?
The following circumstances will render any marriages, whether they were performed before or after the passage of this Act, voidable and inadmissible.
- when the respondent’s impotence prevents the marriage from being consummated.
- when a marriage is violated under the circumstances outlined in Section 5’s Clause (II).
- When the consent of the petitioner or the guardian in the petitioner’s marriage is necessary under Section 5 prior to the start of the Child Marriage Restraint Act of 1948, the consent of the guardian was obtained by force, by fraud, or by any significant fact or set of circumstances that is connected to the respondent.
- if the respondent is carrying a child by someone other than the petitioner.
What is the punishment for Bigamy?
According to Sections 494 and 495 of the IPC (45 of 1860), a marriage between two Hindus after the start of the Act is void if, at the time of the wedding, any one of the spouses is still married to their current spouse.
Hindus are guided to form a formal marriage relationship by the Hindu Marriage Act. It gives marriage purpose, allows the bride and groom to live together, and provides safety for their families and kids so that they are not affected by their parental problems. This article covers the important aspects of the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955. We hope it is helpful to you. Feel free to ask any query in the comments section.