Live-in relationship between consenting adults, not an offence: Allahabad High Court

Supreme Court: Adult Couple Can Live Together Without Marriage

The Allahabad High Court recently granted police protection to a couple who wanted to live together, observed that a live-in relationship between two consenting adults is not an offence,

The High Court observed that it is “settled the law that where a boy and a girl are major and they are living with their free will, then, nobody including their parents, has authority to interfere with their living together”.

A division bench comprising Justice Anjani Kumar Mishra and Justice Prakash Padia observed that; “Live­ in relationship is a relationship which has not been socially accepted in India, unlike many other countries. In the case of Lata Singh vs. State of U.P. reported in (2006) 2 SCC(Cri) 478, it was observed that a live-in relationship between two consenting adults of heterosexual sex does not amount to any offence even though it may be perceived as immoral”.

The Domestic Violence Act as been enacted to cover couples having relationship in the nature of marriage, Court noted. A writ petition was filed by a couple who feared threat of harassment and intimidation by family members.

 Petitioner no.01 a woman of age 24 choose to live with Petitioner no.02 a man of age 28 years when the family members of woman(petitioner no.1) were forcibly trying to solemnize her marriage with another man.

The couple stated that they have been living together for past six month nut the family members are interfering in their peaceful life. No Action was ensued after complaint being done. Feared by threats and harassment by the family members, the petitioners knocked the doors of the High Court.

“Having regard to the facts and circumstances of the case, we are of the view that the petitioners are at liberty to live together and no person shall be permitted to interfere in their peaceful living. As right to life is a fundamental right insured under Article 21 of the Constitution of India in which it is provided that no person shall be deprived of his right to life and personal liberty,”the High Court observed that the petitioners are at liberty to live together.

Disposing the writ petition, High Court ordered the police protection will be provided if they request for the same.

“In case any disturbance is caused in the peaceful living of the petitioners, the petitioners shall approach the Senior Superintendent of Police, Farrukhabad i.e. the second respondent, with self attested computer generated copy of this order downloaded from the official website of High Court Allahabad, who shall provide immediate protection to the petitioners”.

A division bench of the High Court declared that “the right to live with a person of his/her choice irrespective of religion professed by them is intrinsic to right to life and personal liberty.”


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