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Above: A Parsi marriage being consummated (representative image)/Photo Courtesy: www.formyshaadi.com

The Supreme Court on Thursday (December 7) finally heard the case involving a Parsi woman raising the legal issue whether she gets automatically converted to Hindu religion after her marriage to a Hindu man.

The bench comprising of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A K Sikri, A M Khanwilkar, D Y Chandrachud and Ashok Bhushan witnessed arguments especially on the technical issues involved in the case and posted the matter for next hearing to December 12.

Indira Jaising appearing for the petitioner submitted points to the bench basing her arguments:

  • Religion is the matter of choice and it the matter of believe (Article 25)
  • ‎None can deny attending my father’s funeral. It is my personal right to attend.
  • when the constitutional bench took the matter of instant triple talaq then the bench made some changes related to Article 14.

Chief Justice replied: “That change was against administration. And the Article 14 is dual in nature. It has different approach when someone claims it again administration and it has different approach when it is against any person.”

Jaising further mentioned that the approach of society for a girl is different and for a boy is different. Because she is a girl that is why she’s denied to attend it although she admitted that she never changed her religion. She mentioned that the common law has been imported in India by Article 372. And on the basis of this, the High Court gave the verdict.

Bench asked what is the reason behind High Court judgment.

She said the only simple reason was that she converted into Hindu.

Bench asked two major things — is that clash of identity or what? Under Hindu marriage act, a person has to convert his marriage for falling under this act. And the special marriage act was enacted because the spouse is not going to change their religion and want to marry.

CJI said: “This issue is very simple if a woman loses her identity after having special marriage.”

Jaising further said that if a non hindu converts in hindu then the caste divides. She said this is happening with reservation.

CJI said reservation and marriage is totally different issue. “Don’t mix it.”

Jaising said there is only one way to get out of this caste system and that is inter-caste marriages. This case has so many dimensions but take this case as a matter of inter-religion marriage.

CJI said prima facie we are not going to accept this merger principle.

—India Legal Bureau

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