A five-judge Constitution bench will decide whether a woman marrying outside her faith can be assumed to have converted to her husband’s religion, the Supreme Court said in an order on Monday, according to PTI.
The court was hearing a challenge to a 2012 Gujarat High Court verdict, which said that a Parsi woman is deemed to have become a Hindu after she marries a Hindu man under the Special Marriage Act. The petition had said that the verdict denied a woman the fundamental right to freely profess and practice her religion under Article 25 of the Constitution.
The plea was filed by Goolrokh Gupta, a Parsi who married a Hindu man in 1991 and was not allowed to enter the “Tower of Silence” during the last rites of her father by Parsi tradition. She said the High Court’s verdict treated women as “the class of cattle”.
The Supreme Court bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra said a larger bench would examine whether “doctrine of culture”, by which a woman assumes her husband’s religion after marriage, is applicable to the case.