Coming out in defense of two lovers who belong to the same gotra (ancestral lineage), a city court on Thursday observing that the age-old Hindu tradition that prohibits marriage between two individuals of the same gotra does not hold good in modern times and the statue does not bar such a relationship.
“It is evident that the law does not prohibit a swagotra marriage and hence there is no reason why two individuals who are in love and are not within the prohibited degree of relationship cannot be allowed to marry and live happily as man and wife,” Additional Sessions Judge Kamini Lau said.
The tradition denouncing such marriages was instituted for the purposes of invocation and rituals and later extended to marriage only on account of genetic reasons for “maintaining hybrid vigour,” the court said.
“The Hindu Marriage Act, which abrogates and modifies all the past laws and has made marriage now strictly adult and monogamous; has done away with the caste and gotra restriction,” the court observed.
The court's clarification of the legal propositions with regard to social opposition to swagotra marriages came while deciding an anticipatory bail application of a youth who had been accused of kidnapping and marrying a girl of the same gotra as his.
According to the Hindu tradition, a boy and a girl of the same gotra (ancestral lineage) cannot marry as such relationship is termed as incest.
“It is time that certain misconception about swagotra marriage are cleared and there is need to educate people in view of thoughtless opposition to such marriages and ruthless aftermath which follows in the form of honour killing or social ostracisation,” the court said.