Amid 'Love Jihad' debate, courts reinforce freedom to choose partner
First Published Dec 2, 2020, 11:51 AM IST
Even as states like Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh have gone ahead with legal options to curb "love Jihad" and with others mulling over taking the same course of action, the judiciary has in the last few days reinforced an individual's freedom and fundamental right to choose a partner. Here are some of the recent judgments by courts across India.
A division bench of the Karnataka High Court recently disposed of a habeas corpus petition filed by one Wajeed Khan seeking the release of his lover Ramya from confinement. In its judgment, the bench said: "It is well settled that a right of any major individual to marry the person of his/her choice is a fundamental right enshrined in the Constitution of India and the said liberty relating to the personal relationships of two individuals cannot be encroached by anybody irrespective of caste or religion."
The Allahabad High Court recently gave a verdict stating that "Right to live with a person of his/her choice irrespective of religion professed by them, is intrinsic to right to life and personal liberty. Neither any individual nor a family nor even the state can have an objection to the relationship of two major individuals who out of their own free will are living together."
"To disregard the choice of a person who is an adult would not only be antithetic to freedom of choice of a grown-up individual, but would also be a threat to concept of unity in diversity. An individual on attaining majority is statutorily conferred with the right to choose a partner, which if denied would not only affect his/her human right, but also his/her right to life and personal liberty, guaranteed under Article 21 of Constitution," the court further observed.
Last month, the Delhi High Court too observed that an adult woman is free to reside wherever she wants and with whoever she wishes. The court passed the order while hearing a habeas corpus petition filed by a girl’s parents.
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