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Live-in relationships morally and socially unacceptable: Punjab and Haryana High Court rejected to grant safeguards to live-in couple

The Punjab and Haryana High Court declined to provide protection to a live-in couple who purportedly suffered intimidation from the girl’s family after their elopement, stating that granting such protection would disrupt the society’s social structure.

The petition was submitted by Gulza Kumari and Gurwinder Singh. The girl in this case who initiated the petition is barely 19 years old, while her partner is 22. The duo informed the court that they have been residing together and that they were seeking life and liberty defence by the plea. The petitioner quoted former High Court rulings in Sukhbir Singh v. State of Punjab and Ors and Simran Kaur v. State of Punjab and Ors, in which the court mandated the concerned Senior Superintendent of Police to investigate pleas for defence from couples in live-in relationships.

Under the guise of filing the petition, the petitioners were seeking permission for their live-in union, according to Justice Madaan. He claimed that live-in relationships are “morally and socially unacceptable,” and that “no defence order in the petition can be released, and the petition is accordingly discarded.” 

Advocate JS Thakur, who represented the petitioners, clarified that both participants were legally qualified to marry and desired to do so. They were unable to proceed with their marriage plans, however, because the girl’s family had some of the required papers, such as an Aadhar card. It was also argued that since the Supreme Court of India had previously affirmed the live-in arrangement, they wanted to approach the HC, requesting safeguards before the marriage, and that they were in a live-in relationship at the time to avert the animosity of the girl’s family, who were opposed to their relationship.

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