Registration of Marriage under Hindu Marriage Act

Hindu marriage is a union of individuals as spouses and is identified through habitable continuity. Marriage is considered as a sacred institution in the Indian culture. After the marriage is solemnized among the bride and the groom, certain necessities should be fulfilled to offer it a legal standing, i.e., to make it legitimate under the legal guidelines accepted in India by registering it. A marriage which has already been solemnised can be registered either under the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 or under the Special Marriage Act, 1954.

The Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 deals with marriage registration in case both husband and wife are Hindus, Buddhists, Jains or Sikhs or, where they have converted into any of these religions. Whereas, the Special Marriage Act, 1954 lay down the procedure for both solemnization and registration of marriage, where either of the husband or wife or both are not Hindus, Buddhists, Jains or Sikhs.

In 2006, the Supreme Court in Seema v. Ashwani Kumar & Ors.  determined that marriages of all individuals who’re residents of India belonging to diverse religions have to be registered compulsorily in their respective States, in which the wedding is solemnized.

The Supreme Court and the High Courts have repeatedly emphasized the need to make registration of marriages obligatory.

According to Section 12 of the Compulsory Registration of Marriage Bill, 2005:

  1. Every marriage that’s solemnized or contracted between Indian citizens or in cases where one is at least an Indian citizen, performed in the country under any law or custom governing such marriages, the marriage shall be compulsorily registered with the appropriate Registrar of Marriages.
  2. It should also be the duty of both parties in the marriage to take all necessary steps for registration of marriage.

The essential conditions of a legitimate Hindu Marriage are described under Section 5 and Section 7 of the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955. By virtue of section 5 of the Hindu Marriage Act 1955, a marriage will be valid only if both the parties to the marriage are Hindus. Whereas, Section 7 offers for Ceremonies to be completed for a Hindu marriage wherein,

  • A Hindu marriage may be solemnized in accordance with the customary rites and ceremonies of either party thereto and
  • Where such rites and ceremonies include the Saptapadi (that is, the taking of seven steps by the bridegroom and the bride jointly before the sacred fire), the marriage becomes complete and binding when the seventh step is taken.

If a marriage is solemnized via way of means of the important conditions and existing legitimate customs it can be registered. The Hindu Marriage Act best offers registration of marriage that has already been solemnized.

Procedure

  • The Parties to marriage need to apply to the concerned authority in whose locale marriage is finished or all things considered parties to the marriage are residing.
  • The Application form of the marriage is to be joined by the vital records.
  • Both the parties need to go with their folks or guardians or different witnesses to the office of Marriage Registrar within one month from the date of marriage.
  • The Competent Authority for enrolling marriage is the Registrar/Tehsildar of the locale, where the application has been filled.
  • The enrolment done under the Hindu marriage act doesn’t need any notification; it very well may be done around the same time of filling of application.
  • In certain cases, a certificate likewise must be acquired from the religious institution where marriage is finished.

Effect of not Registering

An unregistered marriage isn’t to be treated as ‘void’ however just a way to encourage registration. There can be small punishments joined to non-registration. This would help in instances when the spouse has been left penniless and a second marriage has been contracted by the other companion, the evidence of the first marriage will be unquestionable and not grant a spouse to surrender his family and maintenance commitments, etc.

References:

https://blog.ipleaders.in/marriage-registration-laws-india/

https://lawbhoomi.com/registration-of-marriage-in-india/

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