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Live-In-Relationship Between A Married & Unmarried Person Not Permissible: Rajasthan High Court

Sparsh Upadhyay
10 Jun 2021 10:53 AM GMT
Rajasthan High Court, Live In Relationship, Married Man, Unmarried Woman, Not Permissible, Justice Pankaj Bhandari,
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Dealing with a plea of the Petitioners (Woman-Man) who sought the protection of life and liberty, the Rajasthan High Court, after noting that Petitioner No. 2 (Man) was already married, ruled that:

"A live-in-relationship between a married and unmarried person is not permissible."

The Bench of Justice Pankaj Bhandari was hearing the plea of a Woman aged 29 and a Man aged 31, who sought the protection of life and liberty.

The Court further observed that the pre-requisites for a live-in-relationship as held by the Apex Court in D.Velusamy vs. D. Patchaiammal (2010) 10 SCC 469 is:

  • That the couple must hold themselves out to society as being akin to spouses, and;
  • Must be of legal age to marry or qualified to enter into a legal marriage, including being unmarried.

With this, the Criminal Miscellaneous Petition was accordingly dismissed.

On Monday, the Punjab & Haryana High Court had directed SSP, Faridkot to look into the grievance of an already married woman and an unmarried man living together in a live-in relationship and seeking protection of life and liberty against private parties.

The Bench of Justice Vivek Puri disposed of their (Couple's) plea with a direction to the Senior Superintendent of Police, Faridkot to look into the grievance of the petitioners (married woman and unmarried man) as projected in their representation.

Protection Plea- Married Woman & Unmarried Man In A Live-In Relation: Punjab & Haryana High Court Directs SSP To Look Into Their Grievance

Last year, the Allahabad High Court had held that where a man and a woman, during the subsistence of their marriages to other persons, reside as a live in couple, they will not be entitled to any protection under the law.

While dismissing the writ petition moved by a live in couple, who "candidly" stated that they had married to other persons but they now lived with each other, the division bench comprising Justice Bharati Sapru and Justice Piyush Agrawal said,

"The marriages of both the petitioners have not been terminated in accordance with law. During the subsistence of their marriages with other partners, it is not possible for the Court to provide security to such a couple who are, virtually, flouting the law of the land."

The Rajasthan High Court recently reiterated that personal life and liberty under Art. 21 has to be protected irrespective of the fact that relationship between two major individuals may be termed as immoral and unsocial.

A single bench comprising of Justice Satish Kumar Sharma also observed that under Sec. 29 of the Rajasthan Police Act, 2007 every police officer in the State is duty bound to protect the life and liberty of the citizens.

"...personal life and liberty has to be protected, except according to procedure established by law as mandated under Article 21 of the Constitution of India, irrespective of the fact that the relation between two major individuals may be termed as immoral and unsocial," the bench observed.
"Further, as per Section 29 of the Rajasthan Police Act, 2007 every police officer is duty bound to protect the life and liberty of the citizens," the bench observed further.

In the year 2016, the Allahabad High Court had refused to grant police protection to a live-in couple on the ground that one of them is married to another person and the marriage has not been dissolved by any competent court as on date.

No Police Protection For 'Adulterous' Live-In Relationships, Rules Allahabad HC [Read Judgment]

The couple had approached the high court contending that one of them is already married against her wishes. They said they were having live in-relationship for the past five years, had eloped, and intend to marry, therefore, seek protection.

Referring to Indra Sharma vs. V.K.V. Sharma, Justice Suneet Kumar observed that under law, a relationship 'in the nature of marriage' is recognised and not a simplicitor live-in relationship as held by the Supreme Court. "
The relationship is adulterous for which the second petitioner can be prosecuted," the court said terming their writ petition as 'misconceived'.

Case title - Rashika Khandal v. State Of Rajasthan

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