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Second marriage valid even if plea against divorce is pending, says Supreme Court

The Supreme Court has clarified that the second marriage would not be void if solemnized during the pendency of the divorce appeal.

The “incapacity to marriage” as mentioned under the Hindu Marriage Act would not lead to nullity of second marriage, reported Deccan Heraldciting SC verdict.

The observation was made by a bench of justices S A Rohde and L Nageswara Rao.

Interpreting section 15 of Hindu Marriage Act, SC bench observed that restriction placed on the second marriage in Section 15 of the Act till the dismissal of an appeal would not apply to a case where parties have settled and decided not to pursue the matter, reported Live Law.

The top court overturned a judgment of the Delhi High Court, which declared a man’s marriage during the pendency of his appeal against a decree of divorce as void.

According to reportsthe man got married the second time when his appeal against divorce from his first wife was pending in High Court. During the pendency of his plea, he had settled dispute with his first wife and filed an application for accepting the divorce and sought withdrawal of his appeal.

Section 5(1) of the Hindu Marriage Act places a bar on marriage by a person who has a spouse living at the time of the marriage. Section 11 makes such a marriage null and void. Section 15 tells when a divorcee can marry again.

“The Hindu Marriage Act is a social welfare legislation and a beneficent legislation and it has to be interpreted in a manner which advances the object of the legislation,” the court said.

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