Physical presence of couple seeking registration of marriage mandatory: Delhi govt tells HC
New Delhi, Aug 25: The Delhi Government Wednesday told the Delhi High court that the physical presence of a couple seeking registration of marriage was mandatory before the concerned authority and the process cannot be undertaken through video conferencing.
Delhi government counsel told the court that neither the rules concerned nor the software used for the registration of marriage permitted parties to not appear physically. The counsel explained that the process of marriage registration included a photograph of the couple being taken at the SDM office.
Justice Rekha Palli, who was hearing a plea by a couple seeking registration of their marriage through video conferencing, however remarked that the process to the undertaken only pertained to the registration of a marriage that has already happened.
“You are only registering something. They are not marrying in your presence. Software does not permit (virtual presence) is your problem,” remarked the judge. Since the Delhi government was yet to file its affidavit in the matter, the court granted three days' time to it to do so. Counsel appearing for the couple urged the court to not grant any adjournment on the next date of hearing.
“I'm saying this is final opportunity (to file counter affidavit),” the judge said. Counsel for the couple submitted that all relevant documents have already been filed and the witnesses were ready to physically appear before the official concerned. She also claimed that registration through video conferencing mode was being carried out by certain officials in the city.
In the present case, the couple claimed that they have been married in 2012 and were currently residing in USA.
The couple sought directions to the Delhi government to accept their online application for registration of marriage under the Delhi (Compulsory Registration of Marriage) Order, 2014 and permit them to appear before the concerned authority for purposes of registration of their marriage through video conferencing.
The court had first sought a response from the Delhi government on July 16. The matter would be heard next on September 6.