Friday, June 3, 2022

'Arya Samaj Has No Business Giving Marriage Certificates' : Supreme Court

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The Supreme Court on 3/06/22 refused to accept a marriage certificate issued by Arya Samaj while considering the bail application of an accused against whom FIR was registered for offences relating to kidnap and rape of a minor under Sections 363, 366A, 384, 376(2)(n), 384 IPC and Section 5(L)/6 of the POCSO Act.

Rejecting the submissions of the counsel that the prosecutrix who had levelled allegations of rape was a major girl and marriage between the petitioner and the prosecutrix had already taken place at Arya Samaj, the vacation bench of Justices Ajay Rastogi and BV Nagarathna said:"Arya Samaj has no business giving marriage certificate. This is the work of authorities. Show the real certificate."

It may be noted that the Supreme Court on April 4 had agreed to hear a plea challenging a Madhya Pradesh High Court order directing Madhya Bharat Arya Pratinidhi Sabha ("Sabha"), an Arya Samaj organisation to comply with the provisions of the Special Marriage Act, 1954 ("SMA") while solemnising marriages.
A Bench comprising Justices K.M. Joseph and Hrishikesh Roy issued notice as well as stayed the operation of the High Court order, wherein the Sabha was directed to amend its Guidelines dated 26.08,2016, by incorporating the provisions of Section 5, 6, 7 and 8 of the SMA, within a months' time.

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