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HC says marriage not decided by Hindu calendar

BANGALORE: Does it matter if a couple decides to tie the knot during Dhanurmasa or Ashada? No, the high court has ruled.

Cancelling a decree of divorce granted by a family court in favour of a 35-year-old Mysore resident, a division bench of Justices Mohan ShantanaGoudar and K GovindRajulu observed: “It all depends on the facts of each case and persons involved. Some persons may believe in auspicious days while others may not. Only on that ground (the wedding date fell during Dhanurmasa), it cannot be said that a marriage hasn’t taken place.”

The court ruling came in an appeal filed by a Mysore-based woman and her parents. The appellant had challenged a decree granted by a family court in 2006 in the husband’s favour.

The husband had filed a suit for declaration that the marriage dated January 10, 1997, between him and his wife, be held null and void. He said the marriage had taken place under threat and his wife was five years older to him. The husband, in a lower court, also alleged that he was forced to sign certain documents in a local police station and exchange garlands at a Ganesha temple in Mysore.

The wife’s advocate in the HC argued that under Section 12 of the Hindu Marriage Act, such a suit should be filed within one year of marriage or after one year from the time when differences between the couple surface.

The husband, in this case, filed the suit after over two years of marriage. The lawyer also argued that there was no evidence to prove that the husband was forced into the marriage.

The lower court had ruled that since a suit for declaration can be filed within three years from the date of cause of action under sections 11 or 12 of the Hindu Marriage Act, the husband’s suit is maintainable.

The lower court, while granting a decree in favour of the husband, had further observed: “As per the Hindu calendar, the month of January (when the couple got married) is Dhanurmasa. According to the husband, the said month is treated as inauspicious and therefore, auspicious functions like the marriage, wouldn’t have taken place during the said month.”

Justice ShantanaGoudar, while setting aside the lower court order, remarked: “The court below has made much about Dhanurmasa for coming to the conclusion that the marriage has taken place during an inauspicious period. Such a contention cannot be accepted in as much as marriages take place even in Ashada masa. Even otherwise, the case of the husband is not that the marriage did not take place, but that it was not voluntary. Therefore, the court is not justified in concluding that the wedding must not have taken place during Dhanurmasa.”

The HC ruled that the marriage between the man and his wife did take place on January 10, 1997, in a healthy atmosphere without any force.


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