SC: In proceedings u/s 125 Cr.P.C., strict proof of marriage not necessary

The Hon’ble Supreme Court, today i.e. on 24thOctober 2018, in the matter of Kamala and Ors. versus M.R. Mohan Kumar pronounced that when an application under Section 125 of Cr.P.C is presented before the court, the need of strict proof for proving the existence of marriage does not arise as it does in matrimonial proceedings.

The Hon’ble Apex Court also observed:

Unlike matrimonial proceedings where strict proof of marriage is essential, in the proceedings under Section 125 Cr.P.C., such strict standard of proof is not necessary as it is summary in nature meant to prevent vagrancy. (Para 15)

When the parties live together as husband and wife, there is a presumption that they are a legally married couple for claim of maintenance of wife under Section 125 Cr.P.C. (Para 15)

The law presumes in favour of marriage and against concubinage when a man and woman have cohabited continuously for a number of years. (Para 16)

In the proceedings under Section 125 Cr.P.C., strict proof of marriage is not necessary. Based upon oral and documentary evidence, where a family court has held that there is a valid marriage, the High Court being the revisional court has no power to reassess the evidence and substitute its views on findings of fact. The findings recorded by the family court as to the existence of a valid marriage not to be interfered with by the High Court. (Para 21)

Copy of Judgement : Judgement 24-Oct-2018

-Tushar Kaushik

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