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Arya Samaj not authorised to issue marriage certificates: Supreme Court

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The Supreme Court has rejected the marriage certificate issued by an Arya Samaj temple in Madhya Pradesh, saying that it was not the work and jurisdiction of Arya Samaj to issue marriage certificates.

A Bench comprising Justice Ajay Rastogi and Justice B.V. Nagarathna passed the order on Friday, while considering the bail application of an accused, who was booked for kidnapping and raping a minor girl.

The Apex Court observed that only competent authorities were permitted to issue marriage certificates and told the accused to bring the original certificate before the Court.

The Supreme Court also rejected the submissions of the Counsel of the accused that the prosecutrix (girl), who had levelled allegations of rape, was a major and the marriage between the petitioner and the prosecutrix had already taken place at an Arya Samaj temple.

As per the FIR lodged by the girl’s family members, the accused had kidnapped and raped the girl, who was a minor.

However, the accused contended that the girl was an adult and had decided to marry him by her own free will and right.

He said the marriage took place in Arya Samaj Mandir.

The man also presented the marriage certificate issued by the Central Bharatiya Arya Pratinidhi Sabha, which the Supreme Court rejected.

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