THE HINDU MARRIAGE ACT, 1955 ACT NO. 25 OF 19551
[18th May 1955.]
An act to amend and codify the law relating to marriage among Hindus.
BE it enacted by Parliament in the Sixth Year of the Republic of India as follows:—
- Short title and extent.—(1) This Act may be called the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955.
(2) It extends to the whole of India except the State of Jammu and Kashmir and applies also to Hindus domiciled in the territories to which this Act extends who are outside the said territories.
- Application of Act.—(1) This Act applies—
- to any person who is a Hindu by religion in any of its forms or developments, including a Virashaiva, a Lingayat,
- or Sikh by religion, and
- to any other person domiciled in the territories to which this Act extends who is not a Muslim, Christian, Parsi, or Jew by religion unless it is proved that any such person would not have been governed by the Hindu law or by any custom or usage as part of that law in respect of any of the matters dealt with herein if this Act had not been passed.
Explanation.—The following persons are Hindus, Buddhists, Jainas, or Sikhs by religion, as the case may be:—
- any child, legitimate or illegitimate, both of whose parents are Hindus, Buddhists, Jainas or Sikhs by religion;
- any child, legitimate or illegitimate, one of whose parents is a Hindu, Buddhist, Jaina or Sikh by religion and who is brought up as a member of the tribe, community, group or family to which such parent belongs or belonged; and
- any person who is a convert or re-convert to the Hindu, Buddhist, Jaina or Sikh religion.
- Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (1), nothing contained in this Act shall apply to the members of any Scheduled tribe within the meaning of clause (25) of article 366 of the Constitution unless the Central Government, by notification in the Official Gazette, otherwise directs.
- The expression “Hindu” in any portion of this Act shall be construed as if it included a person who, though not a Hindu by religion, is, nevertheless, a person to whom this Act applies by virtue of the provisions contained in this section.
- Definitions.—In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires,—
- the expressions “custom” and “usage” signify any rule which, having been continuously and uniformly observed for a long time, has obtained the force of law among Hindus in any local area, tribe, community, group, or family:
Provided that the rule is certain and not unreasonable or opposed to public policy; and
Provided further that in the case of a rule applicable only to a family, it has not been discontinued by the family; “district court” means, in any area for which there is a city civil court, that court, and in any other area the principal civil court of original jurisdiction, and includes any other civil court which