Khap panchayats questioning inter-caste marriage is ‘absolutely illegal’: SC

Khap panchayats questioning inter-caste marriage is 'absolutely illegal': SC

New Delhi, Jan 16: Khap panchayats or associations attacking inter-caste marriage between an adult man and a woman is ‘absolutely illegal’ruled the Supreme Court on Tuesday.

A three-judge bench of the apex court, Headed by Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra hearing a petition against the khap panchayats, a three-judge bench with Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud ruled that an adult woman and man can get married without any attack from society, parents or panchayat.

“Whatever the amicus curiae says about khap, we are not concerned with that. What we are concerned is that if an adult girl or boy gets into marriage, no khap, no individual or no society can question them,” SC observed.

SC also warned Centre to act against such associations or else the court will step in to resolve the matter.

The apex court had earlier sought suggestions from an NGO ‘Shakti Vahini’, amicus curiae and ‘Khap Panchayats’ on the issue.

Khaps are caste or community organisations in villages which at times act as quasi-judicial bodies and pronounce harsh punishments based on regressive and age-old customs and traditions.