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Muslim girl over 16 years of age can marry: Punjab and Haryana HC

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New Delhi, Jun 20: The Punjab and Haryana High Court upheld that a Muslim girl over 16 years of age can marry man of her choice. The high court passed the order while granting protection to a Muslim couple wherein a 21-year-old man and a 16-year-old girl.

The petitioners claimed that their marriage was solemnized on June 8, 2022, as per Muslim rites and ceremonies. According to Muslim law, puberty and majority are one and the same, and there is a presumption that a person attains majority at the age of 15 years, they contended.

Muslim girl over 16 years of age can marry: Punjab and Haryana HC

They sought protection from the court as their families are opposed to the union and had allegedly threatened them for marrying without their permission.

"Merely because the petitioners have got married against the wishes of their family members, they cannot possibly be deprived of their fundamental rights as envisaged in the Constitution of India," The single-judge bench of Justice Jasjit Singh Bedi quoted saying by India Today.

"As per Article 195 from the book 'Principles of Mohammedan Law' by Sir Dinshah Fardunji Mulla, the petitioner No. 2 (girl) being over 16 years of age is competent to enter into a contract of marriage with a person of her choice. Petitioner No.1 (boy) is stated to be more than 21 years of age. Thus, both the petitioners are of marriageable age as envisaged by Muslim Personal Law," he said.

The court further said that it "cannot shut its eyes to the fact that the apprehension of the petitioners needs to be addressed".

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