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Monday, February 26, 2024

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Mother Challenges Daughter’s Mental Capacity To Get Married

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A woman has asked the Supreme Court to declare null and void the marriage contracted by her daughter. She claims her daughter suffers from mental illness and as such, does not have the capacity to have been civilly engaged to a man in 2016.

Things seems to have not worked smoothly between the couple as the man has already filed for divorce sometimes after the wedding. The mother states that the Registrar of Civil Status Office should nullify the engagement.

She claims that that her daughter suffers from moderate mental retardation and follows treatment as an outpatient at the Jawaharlall Nehru hospital. She added that her daughter has been unable to successfully complete her education at primary level and has been enrolled in pre-vocational curriculum. She believes that in view of her daughter’s mental sickness, she could not have given her consent to the civil marriage. Her daughter continues to live with her after the civil marriage. However, the Supreme Court noted that the plaintiff did not produced any medical certificate to establish the existence at the material time of the celebration of the civil marriage of any impairment of the mental faculties of her daughter. Under cross-examination, she admitted that she was looking for someone who would marry her daughter and take good care of her in view of her daughter’s sickness. Also, no evidence was adduced of the common knowledge, in the immediate neighborhood, as to the existence of the impairment of the mental faculties of plaintiff’s daughter.

Moreover, the Civil Status Officer who celebrated the civil marriage insisted  that all the procedures for the celebration of the civil marriage were strictly adhered to. The civil marriage was celebrated in presence of two witnesses. He has obtained the consent of each party to the civil marriage, and they signed the register.

The Supreme Court has therefore declined to grant the request of the mother.

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