Case Comment on Shafin Jahan V. Asokan K.M. & Ors. (Right to Marry a person of One's choice)

Author: Yashika Goplani, Student, Dharmashastra National Law University, Jabalpur, India



In India, marriage is considered to be a sacred relation and has its significance from the beginning but the Right to marry a person of one’s choice has been undermined a lot. The case, Shafin Jahan v. Asokan K.M. & Ors., has laid down emphasis on this right along with explaining in detail the nature and importance of Habeas corpus petition and parens patriae jurisdiction. This case comment has been started with a brief introduction about the case, continued with the facts of the case and the decision of the Kerala High Court. Two major issues have been highlighted in the comment. One is the point of inter caste marriages in which the reaction of the society towards the same, the conversion of faith and the taboo attached towards them has been highlighted. This issue has then been connected with the condition of Hadiya alias Akhila in the case and how her conversion to a different faith was a shock for her family and relatives. The next issue is the ambit and application of parens patriae jurisdiction and the wrong usage of it with reference to the habeas corpus petition in this case by the Kerala High Court has been shown. The case overall highlighted how the High Court has exceeded its jurisdiction and declared the marriage of Hadiya and Shafin Jahan as null and void. Our society still does not favour live-in relationships and inter caste marriages by excluding those who do them and judging their character which infringes the fundamental rights conferred to every citizen of the country by the Indian constitution.

Keywords: Marriage, Article 21 of Indian Constitution, Parens patriae Jurisdiction


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