‘Can Arya Samaj Marriage Bureau Convert Religion Of A Person?’: Madhya Pradesh High Court

In the case of Rahul Alias Golu Vs The State Of Madhya Pradesh And Others (WP No. 26227 of 2021), the Madhya Pradesh High Court, Gwalior Bench recently requested the personal presence of the General Secretary of the Arya Samaj Vivah Mandir Trust to explain to the Court regarding the codified/customary law under which the said institution can convert a person’s religion.

Brief Facts Of The Case: The circumstances of the case were that the Hindu man who filed the petition was given permission to legally wed a Muslim lady after she allegedly converted at the Arya Samaj Vivah Mandir. When the division bench of Justice Rohit Arya and Justice M.R. Phadke heard the writ petition filed in the nature of a habeas corpus, they questioned the learned counsel for respondent No. 6 as to which provision of codified law or customary law allows Arya Samaj Vivah Mandir, which is actually an Arya Samaj Marriage Bureau, to convert a person’s religion. The learned counsel was at a loss for words when asked about the matter, and  Instead, he attempted to argue that there is no reason to question the conversion, after a notarized agreement is presented before the Arya Samaj Vivah Mandir, and marriage is thus solemnised. (Earlier, the Court had denied the petitioner’s request to withdraw the case in a decision dated 18.01.2022, saying that it was a “serious matter”).

Judgement: The Court observed that the argument put out in answer to its inquiry was supported by a “miserably misconceived idea” that had no legal basis. As a result, the Court ordered the General Secretary of the Institution to show up in person on the next hearing date.



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