Adult runaway couple Marriage not required for protection of life and liberty. Live in Relationship not an offence

Live in Relationship not an offence

It has been settled by the Hon’ble Apex Court as well as Hon’ble High Courts including Punjab & Haryana High Court at Chandigarh, that for seeking protection of life and liberty, there is no requirement of marriage for runaway couple. The Hon’ble Supreme Court in Nandakumar and another vs. State of Kerala and others 2018(2) RCR(Civil) 899 observed the following:

“9. We need not go into this aspect in detail. For our
purposes, it is sufficient to note that both appellant No. 1 and
Thushara are major. Even if they were not competent to enter
into wedlock (which position itself is disputed), they have right
to live together even outside wedlock. It would not be out of
place to mention that `live-in relationship’ is now recognized by the Legislature itself which has found its place under the
provisions of the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence
Act, 2005.

10 to 13 xxx xxx xxx

14. Accordingly, we allow this appeal and set aside the
impugned judgment of the High Court. However, since
Thushara has not appeared as she was not made party in these
proceedings, while setting aside the directions of the High
Court entrusting the custody of Thushara to respondent No. 4,
we make it clear that the freedom of choice would be of
Thushara as to with whom she wants to live.”

Adult couple- runaway couple-Marriage not required for protection of life and liberty. Live in Relationship not an offence

It was held by the Apex Court in the above judgement that the person above the age of 18 years i.e. major as per Majority Act, has the full right to decide or choose a person with whom he or she wants to live and even the wedlock in not required for the same. Thus, while relying upon the above judgment, the Punjab and Haryana High Court on 06.01.2021 gave the direction to the concerned SSP of the area while deciding the petition filed by runaway couple seeking protection of life and liberty, who did not perform marriage and living in live in relationship, to decide the application of the petitioner moved before him in this regard.

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