• Forced marriage

Hi,

6 years back, our family had to suffer a lot and had to go through a lot of stress. While this case may sound astonishing to many, it's harsh reality on ground. Before getting to the detail of this case, it would be imperative to provide the context and background of my family. 

Our roots are in typical village, where people have orthodox mindset, we use to visit our extended family in village once or twice in a year. As demanded by work, My father moved out of village to a small town. Despite of financial challenges he did his best for us. When (me and my brother) began working, status of our family raised and it did not go well with villagers. we are IT professionals (Me and my elder brother) staying in IT hub of India, away from our parents who stay in small town. We were a small happy family, getting into plans for my elder brother's marriage. The sequence of events were as follow

(Citing limitation with space, I am keeping it brief)

we had finalised a proposal which came through one of our relative as we did like the photo. Having our closed relative involved, we agreed for marriage in principle. But we had to change our stance, when we saw the girl in person and realised that photo was doctored and they had cheated us.

When we refused the proposal, began series of request call, which soon turned harsh and later abusive before turning to life threats. We came to know that Uncle of the girl (who was head of panchayat) was politically highly connected goon.

We had somehow managed to survive the stress and pressure they had build but one fine morning all hell broke loose when he (goon) turned up at residence of my parents, with Police. Having found none, they called us to threaten. Police made a statement that 'I will take away your father by dragging on ground' (in hindi).we do have this call on record. Police later went to our village also. My hometown,girls place and my village, all are in different district. 

While my father was still trying to explore the legal angle, he(goon) colluded with head of Panchayat of our village. Our village head convinced our parents to come to village and he will help sort out this.

It was a trap, they had called Panchayat and forced our parents to accept it. citing the possibility of physical assault, they had to agree but my father didn't sign on formal paper. 

Since it was a forced marriage, there were no ceremony or any sort of invites from our end. On marriage date, few of our family members reached the temple, where marriage took place.For first 3 years, she was with her parents but due to dowry threat we had to bring her to our house in home town, where she stayed with our parents for 2 years before leaving again. For last 1 year, she is with her parents. Girls uncle (goon) passed away of heart attack.

Having safeguard provided by SC against misuse of dowry act and goon gone, we are looking for legal options if this marriage can be cancelled.
Asked 4 years ago in Family Law
Religion: Hindu

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14 Answers

You cannot file for anullment of marriage after period of 6 years

2)file for divorce on grounds of mental cruelty

3) wife refusing to stay with husband amounts to mental cruelty and is ground for divorce

4) wife threatening to file false case of dowry amounts to mental cruelty and is ground for divorce

Ajay Sethi
Advocate, Mumbai
87893 Answers
6207 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

Hello,

It has been 3 years now and therefore it will be difficult to file a case for nullity. Instead to disolve the marriage you will have to file a case of divorce on the ground of cruelity.

Regards

Anilesh Tewari
Advocate, New Delhi
17940 Answers
377 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

1. It appears that the marriage is not consummated and if that is so then it is a ground for nullity of marriage.

2. The force exercise to perform this marriage is another ground to declare this marriage as null and void.

3. So without any delay file such suit for nullity.

4. in the said suit claim for maintenance can also be filed.

5. if they threaten you further or try to assault you can lodge complaint of assault, criminal intimidation and extortion on which basis the Police is bound to register FIR.

6. If the Police does not register FIR then you can seek intervention of Police.

Devajyoti Barman
Advocate, Kolkata
22515 Answers
402 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

You cannot cancellation or annulment the marriage after so.much of time you should file a divorce and on ground of cruelty by wife and her family in that you can add that the marriage was done by force and now they are asserting more cruelty and wife is also not living with you.

Also threatening and false cases amount cruelty.

Shubham Jhajharia
Advocate, Ahmedabad
25516 Answers
179 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

1) If you narrate same wording in the case filing and your brother and his wife had stayed separately all these days or till date nor did they came single day in physical contacts. Than you can apply for marriage of annulment.

2) If any proof is proved against you in the court than marriage will get dissolve in the way of divorce or you can apply for Mutual Consent Divorce.

Ganesh Kadam
Advocate, Pune
12335 Answers
191 Consultations

4.9 on 5.0

1. You have mentioned "they had called Panchayat and forced our parents to accept it. citing the possibility of physical assault, they had to agree but my father didn't sign on formal paper.".

2. the above is fine but how and why did you marry her in place of lodging a police complaint against them?

3. I am aware of the happenings at Bokaro since I stayed at Ranchi for 9 years but the fact is that you are required to report the matter to the police on getting the 1st opportunity.

4. No Court will accept it now that you had kept quite for such a long time fearing the goon.

5. However, you can now file a divorce petition against your wife on the ground of cruelty now for which you shall have to produce evidence of her cruel acts on you.

6. You can also file the divorce suit on the ground of desertion after two years of her deserting you.

Krishna Kishore Ganguly
Advocate, Kolkata
26602 Answers
726 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

Now you may go ahead if feeling safe to divorce on the basis of the evidence.

There will still be some restainment to this action and you need to keep the petince and money on.

Vimlesh Prasad Mishra
Advocate, Lucknow
6848 Answers
23 Consultations

4.9 on 5.0

Mam,

12. Voidable Marriages.-(1) Any marriage solemnized, whether before or after

the commencement of this Act, shall be voidable and may be annulled by a decree

of nullity on any of the following grounds, namely:-

(a) that the marriage has not been consummated owing to the impotency of the

respondent; or

(b) that the marriage is in contravention of the condition specified in clause (ii) of

Section 5; or

(c) that the consent of the petitioner, or where the consent of the guardian in

marriage of the petitioner was required under Section 5 as it stood immediately

before the commencement of the Child Marriage Restraint (Amendment) Act, 1978,

the consent of such guardian was obtained by force or by fraud as to the nature of

the ceremony or as to any material fact or circumstance concerning the

respondent; or

(d) that the respondent was at the time of the marriage pregnant by some person

other than the petitioner.

2) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (1), no petition for annulling

a marriage

(a) on the ground specified in clause (c) of sub-section (1) shall be entertained if-

(i) the petition is presented more than one year after the force had ceased to

operate or, as the case may be, the fraud had been discovered ; or

(ii) the petitioner has, with his or her full consent, lived with the other party to the

marriage as husband or wife after the force had ceased to operate or, as the case

may be, the fraud had been discovered;

(b) on the ground specified in clause (d) of sub-section (1) shall be entertained

unless the court is satisfied-

(i) that the petitioner was at the time of the marriage ignorant of the facts alleged;

(ii) that proceedings have been instituted in the case of a marriage solemnized

before the commencement of this Act within one year of such commencement and

in the case of marriages solemnized after such commencement within one year

from the date of the marriage; and

(iii) that marital intercourse with the consent of the petitioner has not taken place

since the discovery by the petitioner of the existence of the said ground.

Kindly refer sub section 1(c) of above section with sub section now the act clearly states two condition first if it is filled within 1 year from time when such force ceases to be exist that is in your case uncle, secondly your brother has not.lived with full consent.

Now.in first case you need strict evidence to the effect that uncle was force secondly you also have to prove that brother never had an consent relationship with his wife now this is difficult to prove as she has lived 2 years as daughter in law at your place and she in her reply can dispute.the same fact, also the delay in filing no doubt uncle was goon police was with him.but still there was court so there can be hurdules in anullmnent also everything in case has to be provided with strict proof and evidences so if you have that there is possibility marriage will be annulled.

On other hand as compare to annulment it is easy to get a divorce on ground of cruelty as these all facts specifically indicates there had been a cruelty.

So to sum case for annulment or divorce has to be filed looking at complete merits of the case.

Like uncles death, pressure force .

Shubham Jhajharia
Advocate, Ahmedabad
25516 Answers
179 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

1) 6 years have passed since marriage was solemnised

2) better file for divorce on grounds of mental cruelty

Ajay Sethi
Advocate, Mumbai
87893 Answers
6207 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

You could have filed a petition to annul the marriage within one year from the date of marriage for the reason that this was forced upon him against his wishes but on the persisting threats and coercion.

Now you have to file a divorce cae on the grounds of cruelty and in that you can cite all those events that occurred fight from the day you have started looking for an alliance in marriage to him and describe the cruel moments while she was living in your house even for the intermittent brief periods.

Beware of her retaliation with 498a case and DV cases etc.

T Kalaiselvan
Advocate, Vellore
78048 Answers
1543 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

I know that marriage can be annulled if it was based on fraud or Force. Can we use the incidents which had taken place as ground to prove that marriage was forced (especially police and panchayat)?

You can mention them in the pleadings of the divorce petition.

This may give a picture or highlight her cruel activities from the beginning.

Does time factor has any role in diluting the fact that it was forced marriage?

Since you are filing a contested divorce case on the grounds of cruelty, there is no limitation to this.

T Kalaiselvan
Advocate, Vellore
78048 Answers
1543 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

1) Yes there is time limit. If you had put all these issues within a year than the marriage could have annulled. After one year you have to apply for Divorce.

Ganesh Kadam
Advocate, Pune
12335 Answers
191 Consultations

4.9 on 5.0

1. I am aware of the then state of affairs of undivided Bihar since I stayed at Ranchi at that time.

2. Even after creation of Jharkhand the such lawlessness persists.

3. However, our Court will avoid to accept the said fact that there was no law and order at that time in your State since if it is so accepted, the then Government's all decisions will go for toss and there will be constitutional chaos. However, you can try for it..

4. You are entitled to file annulment petition on the ground of suppression of fact, application of force etc. but it has to be filed within 1 year from the date of coming to know about the said suppression of the fact and/or cessation of force on you.

5. If the said goon has passed out with in last one year, you can file the annulment petition submitting all the evidence you have with you in support of your allegation.

Krishna Kishore Ganguly
Advocate, Kolkata
26602 Answers
726 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

If the marriage is itself illegal then no need to cancel. Still you can move to court for divorce on basis of forced marriage.

Prashant Nayak
Advocate, Mumbai
27224 Answers
88 Consultations

4.4 on 5.0

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