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HC for realistic solution to teenage marriages

Legislatures should come out with a "comprehensive and realistic solution" to deal with teenage marriages without parents` consent.



New Delhi: Legislatures should come out
with a "comprehensive and realistic solution" to deal with
teenage marriages without parents` consent so that judges are
not left to deal with weeping daughters, devastated parents
and petrified young husbands running for their lives.

The Delhi High Court while making this observation also
said government must take measures to educate youth that
getting married early places a huge burden on their
development.

Observing that legislature should come out with a
"comprehensive and realistic solution", the court said that if
that does not happen then "courts will be flooded with habeas
corpus petitions and judges would be left to deal with broken
hearts, weeping daughters, devastated parents and petrified
young husbands running for their lives chased by serious
criminal cases, when their sin is that they fell in love."

"India is both a modern and a tradition bound nation
at the same time. The old and evil practices of parents
forcing their minor children into matrimony subsists along with
the modern day problem of children falling in love and getting
married on their own".

"Whatever be the reason, the reality must be accepted
and the state must take measures to educate the youth that
getting married early places a huge burden on their
development," the bench comprising Justice B D Ahmed and
Justice V K Jain said.

The court said that in countries like USA and Canada
many states have recognized teenage marriages provided that
the boy and girl are both above 16 years of age and the minor
has his or her parents` consent.

Terming child marriages contracted by the parents on
behalf of their children as "a scourge" the court said
there is difference between marriages forced upon the
children and those done by minors themselves without the
consent of their parents.

The court made these observations while allowing a
young couple to stay as husband and wife holding that the
18-year-old husband was capable of taking care of his
16-year-old wife.

The minor boy, who tied the knot with a minor girl
against the wishes of their family members, approached the
court seeking custody of his wife which is not being allowed
by his in-laws.

Elaborating, the court said the parents of a minor
girl, who tied knot with a minor boy, cannot prevent her to
live with her husband since after marriage the boy becomes her
lawful guardian.

Explaining the legal point on the issue, the court
said "a minor husband is not incompetent, in law, to act as
guardian of his minor wife".

18-year Jitendra Kumar Sharma approached the court
after a criminal case was registered against him on the
complaint of family members of 16-year-old minor girl Poonam
Sharma who alleged the boy had abducted her.

While validating the minor couple`s marriage, the court
said that after marriage the husband becomes her lawful
guardian.

PTI

From Zee News

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