Case Study: Babui Panmato Kuer v. Ram Agya Singh.

By Swarada Rane 7 Minutes Read

Citations: 1967 Indlaw PAT 51, AIR 1968 PAT 190

Date of Judgment: 18th February 1967

Bench: G.N Prasad

Facts :

  1. Petitioner (hereinafter referred to as P), a Girl above 18yrs of age at the time of marriage, appeals to the court for the dissolution of marriage on the grounds that the Consent was obtained by Fraud and Visual misrepresentation.
  2. The Petitioner overheard her father talking to her mother that he had fixed their daughter’s marriage to a man of age between 25-30 who is financially well. On hearing this, the girl impliedly consented the marriage.
  3. At the time of Marriage, and after a few days, P found out that, the man she married to was 60yrs old and that her consent was fraudulently obtained by her parents. Later her father took her away and denied to sent her back
  4. On learning this, Respondent (hereinafter referred to as R) Filed a Complaint against her father U/s 498 IPC and withdrew it in few days after her father bought her back to R.
  5. R thrashed her and kept her hungry for 2 days, She tried escaping somehow, went to her father and then to her Uncle’s house.
  6. R filed a second complaint against her father and her uncle U/s 498 IPC, but somehow he found her and confined in her room.
  7. The petitioner again tried escaping and went to Nanihal, She then filed for Dissolution of Marriage with the respondent on the ground of fraud in the matter of procurement of her consent whereby her marriage was solemnized.

Key Law Positions Established In the case:

1. Whether the said issue falls under the Sec 12 of the Hindu Marriage Act?

Yes, the said issue falls under Sec 12 (1) (c)  of the Act which states that

the consent of the petitioner, or where the consent of the guardian in the marriage of the petitioner,  the consent of such guardian was obtained by force  (or by fraud as to the nature of the ceremony or as to any material fact or circumstance concerning the respondent), Also scheme of Sec.12 of Act leaves no room for doubt that in a case falling u/s 12 (1) (c)  of the Act, it is not necessary to prove that consent was obtained by force or fraud at the time of marriage.

2. Whether the Appellant was entitled to Dissolution of Marriage with the Respondent?

The trial court stated that

  •  That there was no misrepresentation to the petitioner herself inasmuch as the particulars of the bridegroom were not conveyed to the petitioner directly and had been merely overheard by the petitioner while Her father was mentioning them to her mother; and
  •  That fraudulent misrepresentation within the meaning of Section 12(1)(c) must be made at the time of the solemnization of the marriage and not earlier, that is to say, at the time of settling the marriage.

However, High court, on the other hand, set aside the above view It is to manifest that the impression, which was created in the mind of the petitioner by the talks between her father and her mother, continued even at the time of solemnization of the marriage, because upon the evidence it must be held that the petitioner, being under a heavy veil, at the time of the marriage, could have no opportunity to have a look at her husband so as to be in a position to withdraw her consent even at that stage.

3. Does Guardian’s (mother) consent was also obtained by fraud and misrepresentative means.?

Yes, father had access to full knowledge about the age of the groom and deliberately conveyed this to her mother. Her mother, in this case, would act as an “Agent” wherein the father made such a situation where the appellant would overhear them.


The Respondent did not contest a petition before the Additional District Judge, but he filed a written statement denying the allegations contained in the petition. The Petitioner accordingly pledged her oath in support of her allegations which were accepted by the Court. However the petition for Dissolution of Marriage was dismissed and an appeal was preferred before the High Court u/s 28 of the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 which pronounced its judgment given Below.

The High Court, therefore, stated that the scheme of Section 12 leaves no room for doubt that in a case falling under clause (c), it is not necessary to prove that consent was obtained by force or fraud at the time of the marriage. All that the section requires is that the consent should have been obtained by force or fraud before the marriage was solemnized.  In view of HC, the case of the petitioner falls quite clearly within the ambit of clause (c) of Section 12(1) of the Act. 12. I, therefore, set aside the decision of the court below was annulled the petitioner’s marriage with the respondent under clause (c) of Section 12(1) of the Act.

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