Adult women free to move as per wish: Bombay High Court

Adult women free to move as per wish: Bombay High Court


ombay High Court defended the right of decision making of an inter-religion couple and outlined that "an adult women is free to move as per wish" in a habeaus corpus petition presented before the court. A 19 year old woman married a man from another religion. Later, her father filed Habeaus corpus plea and sought the court to announce the marriage null and void, bringing back his daughter to him. The woman on the other hand appealed to the division bench of Justice S S Shinde and Justice Manish Pitale of the Bombay High Court that she wants to live with her husband.

The Bombay HC while the proceeding and hearing on Tuesday underlined, "We would like to highlight clearly that an adult woman is free to move as per her wishes." In addition to this, the court also ordered Thane police to escort the couple safely to their home in Kalyan area of Thane district and provide them security. The court while hearing the plea asserted, "The Supreme court also encouraged inter religion marriages as that brings homogeneity, peace and equality in society. People will be more receptive towards beliefs and cultures of fellow citizens."

Justice Shinde said while analysing the case, "India is a land of diversity where around 3000 sects and religion coexist in a progressive society. Every 25 kilometers find different kinds of people having different language, belief or attire for that matter. In this nation of 130 crore citizens, we should respect the individuality of citizens along with his adherence to a particular community."

The father of a 19 year old woman knocked on the doors of Bombay HC, seeking her daughter to be produced dead or alive. In the Habeaus corpus plea, father stated that her daughter was usually at home due to Covid 19 lockdown. After her consent, he engaged her to a man on December 6. He claims that she was happy with the engagement. On December 30, 9:30 am the girl left the house after citing an excuse of tailoring work but didn't return. Family members searched for her but as they failed to reach her, the family went to Khadakpada Police station to file a missing report but it wasn't lodged as the Police Officer told them to wait for 24 hours.

Later that day, the policemen from Khadakpada Police station found the woman and informed the family that she had married a man from nearby village of different religion and has been residing with her husband's family since then. The father then chose a legal way to get her daughter back by registering a case. The woman said that she wants to live with her husband. Court refrained from intervening and said, "It's a family matter and an adult woman is free to move as per her wish."