The Supreme Court on Monday granted protection to an inter-caste couple from getting arrested and ordered the police in the national Capital and two other states to provide them security in light of threat to their lives from family members, PTI reported.
The woman is a doctor and belongs to the Yadav community, while her husband is an engineer and belongs to the Jain community, according to NDTV. The couple got married on February 28 as per Hindu rites and rituals. However, shortly after their wedding, they claimed to have received threats to their lives and said they feared the possibility of coercive action from the police of Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh. The couple then moved the Supreme Court.
In their petition, the couple, who is currently living in New Delhi, also sought protection from the Delhi Police in view of the threats, especially from the woman’s family members. Advocate Mannan Mishra, appearing for the couple, made a request to the vacation bench of the top court to take up the matter immediately.
“That in matter of marriage a couple, who are legally major have all the right to marry and the consent of the family or the community or the clan is not necessary, once the two adult individuals agree to enter into the wedlock,” the plea said. The couple argued the right to consensually choose each other as life partners was a manifestation of their choice as recognised under Article 19 and Article 21 of the Constitution.
Taking cognizance of their marriage, a vacation bench comprising justices Ashok Bhushan and Surya Kanta said the couple face a serious threat to their lives from family members. The top court then asked the police commissioner of Delhi, the director general of police in Uttar Pradesh, as well as Rajasthan to not take any coercive action against the petitioners. It also directed them to provide the couple adequate security in case of any requirement.
The bench issued notices to the Centre and the Rajasthan government on the plea. It further noted that the woman had filed a complaint earlier as well with the Jaipur police seeking protection from her family.