Valid Marriage Under Hindu Law
By Shagun Mahendroo
To be valid, the marriage must meet the requirements outlined in Section 5 of
the Hindu Marriage Act (HMA). The most important criterion is that both
parties identify as Hindus under Section 2 of the Hindu Marriage Act.
If the following conditions are met, a marriage between any two Hindus can be
Neither partner has a living spouse at the time of the marriage.
neither party due to mental condition,
is unable to give valid consent;
has had a mental illness of such a form or severity that he or she is
unfit for marriage and childbearing, although being capable of
giving legal permission; or
has experienced multiple bouts of insanity
At the time of the marriage, the groom and bride had reached the age of
21 [twenty-one years].
The parties are not in a prohibitory relationship unless each of them has a
custom or usage that permits them to marry.
The parties are not sapindas of each other unless each of them has a
custom or usage that allows them to marry.
Explanation of the Circumstances:
The first requirement establishes the concept of monogamy.
The second condition is the mental capacity of one of the other parties to the
marriage, which prevents a stupid or maniac from marrying.
The bride and groom must be at least 21 years old to enter into a marriage,
according to the third criteria. Because the law considers them adults at a
particular age, this condition necessitates the bride and groom's assent to the
Individuals with forbidden degrees are not allowed to marry unless it is a
common practise or has been established in the community's usage. A marriage
between them is legal in each of their jurisdictions.
The fifth condition is similar to the fourth, but it forbids two sapindas from
What are the remedies available to the Hindu Marriage Act in the event of a
marriage annulment or dissolution?
From the beginning, marriages that violate Sections 5 (i), (iv), and (v) of the
Hindu Marriage Act have been ruled null and void.
Marriages that contravene the grounds mentioned in Section 12 of the Hindu
Marriage Act are voidable, and the Court may annul them if the Section 12
prerequisites are met.
Judicial Separation: A petition for judicial separation may be filed under
Section 10 on any of the grounds stated in subsection I of Section 13, or, in the
case of a wife, on any of the grounds listed in subsection (ii) thereof, as grounds
Divorce: Under Section 13 of the HMA, every marriage solemnised under the
Hindu Marriage Act may be dissolved by a divorce decision based on a petition
filed by either the husband or the wife. Under Section 13 of the Family Code,
this is a contested divorce.
In divorce proceedings, Section 13A of the Hindu Marriage Act allows an
alternative method of recourse. Instead of issuing a dissolution of marriage
decree, the court may issue a judicial separation judgement. Section 13 clauses
(ii), (vi), and (vii) would be exceptions to the relief.
Section 13B: In the District Court, both parties to a marriage may submit a
petition for dissolution of marriage by decree of divorce, and the court may
grant the decree provided the criteria set forth in section 13B are met.