Prohibition of Child Marriage Act does not Differentiate on the Basis of Religion

Prohibition Of Child Marriage Act, 2006 Does Not Provide Any Distinction based on Religion: P&H High Court

The Hon’ble Punjab and Haryana high court recently in case of Jaspreet Kaur and Anr. versus. State of Punjab and Ors. on 23rd of April 2021 through a single judge bench of Hon’ble Justice Amol Rattan Singh pronounced the verdict in the instant case stating that even though Muslim Personal law allows marriage upon attaining the age of puberty (an age which cannot be categorical) but on the other hand the Prohibition of Child Marriage Act, 2006 is a secular law and it does not provides any such distinction based on religion. Subsequently, if a person is either Hindu or Muslim or any other religion, the prescribed age would be applicable and there should not be any distinction. 

For reference, it is needful to note that the Prohibition of Child Marriage Act, 2006 provides eligible age for women to be 18 years while for men prescribed age is that of 21 years for getting married.

Finally, the Hon’ble single judge bench of the Hon’ble high court in the instant matter allowed the protection to a runaway couple. Additionally, the Hon’ble court also stated that if upon verification of the age certificate of the parties to marriage it is found out that the age of the women in the instant case is below 18 years and any decision that needs to be made shall be taken given the Child Marriage Act, 2006.