In the matter of Ilavarasan v The Superintendent In 1968,a habeas corpus plea was filed by a man named Ilavarasan alleging that his wife had been forcibly imprisoned by her parents despite the fact that they had been married under Section 7-A of the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955, in front of lawyers and union officials. The State of Tamil Nadu legalised self-respect marriages, which do away with higher caste priests and costly rituals and require the assent of both individuals who are at least the legal marriageable age. However, in accordance with the legislation, these weddings must also be registered. The advocates had given the couple a certificate of self-respect marriage.
Analysis of Court Order
The Madras High Court a divisional bench of Justices M Dhandapani and R Vijayakumar asked the Tamil Nadu State Bar Council to undertake disciplinary action against attorneys who perform covert weddings in their offices or union halls and provide marriage licences. They added that such marriages and the marriage certificates issued in accordance with them are invalid according to the Supreme Court.It referenced the 2014 ruling by the Supreme Court in the matter of S Balakrishnan Pandiyan v. The Superintendent of Police, which determined that secret marriages performed in attorney offices and bar association rooms do not qualify as solemnization as defined by law.All marriage ceremonies, including those consummated in accordance with the “self respect” provision, the court ruled, must be “registered under the Tamil Nadu Registration of Marriages Act, 2009 and the parties must physically appear before the Registrar.
Additionally, it is mandated that, within three months of receiving a copy of this order, the Bar Council of Tamil Nadu take disciplinary action against the solicitors who are performing these kinds of marriages across the state of Tamil Nadu by issuing fake certificates. The Law Enforcing Agency is free to take legal action against both the petitioner and the lawyers who conduct these kinds of marriages, according to the High Court.The Court ruled that the marriage was unlawful, and after serving notice on the involved solicitors in the current case, it instructed the Bar Council to take appropriate action.The Court further ordered the Bar Council to take legal action against any solicitors in the State who perform such weddings.