You’re no one to interfere in a marriage: SC to khap panchayats on ‘honour killings’
New Delhi:The Supreme Court told khap panchayats, or kangaroo courts, on Monday not to become conscience keepers of society, saying no one should interfere in the marriage of two consenting adults.
The observation was made by a bench headed by CJI Dipak Misra. The bench was hearing a plea seeking guidelines on how to stop ‘honour killings’.
“We can’t say which marriage is null or void, which marriage is good or bad… just stay out of it,” Misra said.
“Two persons marry…they are adults…you are no one to interfere in it,” the CJI added.
The Supreme Court had earlier said any attack against on an adult man and woman opting for an inter-caste marriage by khap panchayats or associations is “absolutely illegal”.
“If an adult man and woman marry, no khap, panchayat or society can question them,” the CJI-headed bench said last month while hearing a petition against khap panchayats. A non-government organisation Shakti Vahini had in 2010 filed the petition seeking directions to the Centre and state governments for preventing honour crimes.
Khaps, caste or community organisations representing a clan or a group of related clans, frequently make pronouncements on social issues and have often landed in controversies owing to their diktats. One such khap panchayat leader in Haryana blamed chowmein for the rise in rape cases in India.