Is Inter-caste marriage a way forward to reduce communal tensions?

The Supreme Court of India in a recent judgement said that, the educated youngsters are showing a way forward to reduce caste and community tensions across India by involving into the Inter-caste marriage.

Background

Supreme court made this judgment in the backdrop of a case filed by a woman who tied the knot with a man against her family’s wishes. The investigating officer had directed her to leave her husband and be present at the police station. The investigating officer directed her to so following a complaint filed by her relatives.

What did the court say?

  • The court rejected the case against the couple.
  • The apex court further directed the police authorities to counsel the investigating officers.
  • SC also asked the authorities to devise a training programme in order to deal with such cases in a way that it benefits the police personnel.
  • The SC Bench while hearing the judgement, referred to the Hadiya case. In this case, privacy of an individual was declared a fundamental right under Article 21 (Right to life) of Constitution.
  • As per the judgement, Consent of the family or community or clan is not required, once two adult individuals have agreed to enter into knot. Further, their consent has to be given primacy.
  • SC also quoted B. R. Ambedkar’s Annihilation of Caste where he agrees with the fact that, “real remedy is intermarriage”.

Special Marriages Act, 1954

This legislation is used to register the inter-religious and inter-caste marriages in the country. It includes all the marriages belonging to Hindus, Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, Jains, and Buddhists. The act also allows two individuals to solemnise their marriage by a civil contract.

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