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Mandatory for atleast one spouse to be the resident of the state to register marriage in that particular state: The High Court of Kerela

The Cochin Christian Civil Marriage Act, 1920 mandates the couple to be residents of the Cochin State in order to register their marriage under the aforesaid act, however It is not disputed that if one of the parties to the marriage reside within the territorial limits of erstwhile Cochin State, the marriage can be registered under the provisions of the aforesaid Act. The above mentioned has been proclaimed by the Kerela High Court in the case of Frederic Renet and Anr. v. State of Kerala and Anr. [WP(C) NO. 11832 OF 2021] which was passed by a single judge bench comprising Justice Gopinath P. on 11th June 2021.

The facts of the case are as follows. The petitioners had approached the court with a grievance that they were not being permitted to register their marriage under the Cochin Christian Civil Marriage Act, 1920. In an explanation for the same, it was contended by the Government pleader that sub registrar could not permit such a registration because under the provisions of the aforesaid Act since the petitioners were not residents of erstwhile Cochin State. It was submitted that the aforesaid Act applies only to the residents of erstwhile Cochin State.

However, the learned counsel for the petitioner produced the certificate on behalf of the petitioner that was issued by the Village Officer, Karukutty which shows that the 1 st petitioner is a resident of the erstwhile Cochin State.

After a great perusal of the facts and arguments presented in the case, it was concluded by the bench that the writ petition should be disposed of. The registrar was directed to accept the notice of marriage on the date it was filed and cause the registration of the marriage of petitioners under the provisions of the Cochin Christian Civil Marriage Act, 1920. The court further stated that “If there are any defects in the application made by the petitioners, the petitioners shall immediately cure such defects to enable the 2nd respondent to comply with the directions issued as above. If the petitioners present themselves before the 2nd respondent on 14-06-2021 the marriage shall be registered under the provisions of the Cochin Christian Civil Marriage Act, 1920, on the same day, if necessary by waiving the notice period.”

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