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Allahabad High Court States Publishing Notice of Interfaith Marriage invades privacy, not mandatory

Neha Singh

NEW DELHI : On 13th Jan,2020 the Allahabad High Court states that publishing the 30 days prior notice for interfaith marriage under the Special Marriages Act,1954 will now onwards be non mandatory.

The Special Marriages Act, 1954 states that if the interfaith couple give written notice of their marriage intention, the notice should be displayed by the district marriage officer to find out that anyone has any objection to the marriage.

The Court mention in its 47-page order that Under Section 5 of the Act 1954, while providing written notice, it will be optional for the couple to make a request in writing to Marriage Officer to publish or not to publish that notice under section 6 and follow the course of action as prescribed under the Act.

The Marriage Officer has to solemnise the wedding if the couple doesn’t want to go for publication of notice in writing,under section 5 of Act,1954. The court mentions that until now there is no reasonable objective achieved by making the procedure to be more protective or obstructive under the act of 1954.

Section 6 (2) of the Act mentions: The Marriage Officer should publish every such notice attaching a copy at a clearly visible place in his office. The Act also states that if the couple is not residing in the area of the district marriage officer to whom the notice has been provided, the officer should make sure that a copy of the notice should be displayed at the office of that area where the couple permanently residing.

It seems that circumstances had become more difficult for the interfaith couples in Uttar Pradesh and because of this there has been strong opposition to these provisions in the Act.


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