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THE INDIAN CHRISTIAN MARRIAGE ACT, 1872

Title : THE INDIAN CHRISTIAN MARRIAGE ACT, 1872

Year : 1872

[18th July, 1872.]


An Act to consolidate and amend the law relating to the solemnization in India of the marriages of Christians.

WHEREAS it is expedient to consolidate and amend the law relating to the solemnization in India of the marriages of persons professing the Christian religion ;

It is hereby enacted as follows:-

PRELIMINARY


This Act may be called the Indian Christian Marriage Act, 1872.

1*[It extends to the whole of India 2*[except 3*[the territories which, immediately before the 1st November, 1956, were comprised in the States] of Travancore-Cochin, Manipur and Jammu and Kashmir].4*

5* * * * *

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1. Subs. by A. O. 1950,for the second para., as amended by A. O. 1937 and A. O. 1948. [NOTE: The Act does not extend to the State of Manipur, vide Act 30 of 1950, s. 3(2A) and Sch. as amended by Act 68.of 1956, s. 2. The Act has been extended to and brought into force in Dadra and Nagar Haveli (w.e.f. 1-7-1965) by Reg. 6 of 1963, s. 2 and Sch. I.]

2. Subs. by Act 3 of 1951, s. 3 and Sch., for "except Part B States".

3. Subs. by the Adaptation of Laws (No. 2) Order, 1956, for "the States",.

4. In its application to Pondicherry, in section 1, the following shall be inserted at the end-
Provided that nothing contained in this Act shall apply to the Renoncants of the Union territory of Pondicherry. "-(Vide Act 26 of 1968).

5. The commencement cl. rep. by Act 16 of 1874, s. 1 and Sch., Pt.I.

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Rep. by the Repealing Act, 1938 (1 of 1938), s. 2 and Sch., Pt. I.


In this Act, unless there is something repugnant in the subject or context,- " Church of England " and " Anglican " mean and apply to the Church of England as by law established;

"Church of Scotland" means the Church of Scotland as by law established ;

"Church of Rome" and "Roman Catholic" mean and apply to the Church which regards the Pope of Rome as its spiritual head;

" Church " includes any chapel or other building generally used for public Christian worship ;

1*"India" means the 2*[territories] to which this Act extends;
"minor" means a person who has not completed the age of twenty-one years and who is not a widower or a widow;

The expression " Christians " means persons professing the Christian religion;

3* * * * * * *

4*And the expression "Indian Christians" includes the Christian descendants of natives of India converted to Christianity, as well as such converts;

5*"Registrar General of Births, Deaths and Marriages" means a Registrar General of Births, Deaths and Marriages appointed under the Births, Deaths and Marriages Registration Act, 1886 (6 of 1886).

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1 Ins. by Act 3 of 1951, s. 3 and Sch.

2 Subs. by the Adaptation of Laws (No. 2) Order, 1956, for "territory comprised in the States".

3 The definition of "Native State " rep. by the A. O. 1937.

4 Subs. by A. O. 1950, for the original definition.

5 Ins. by Act 6 of 1886, s. 30.

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Every marriage between persons, one or both of whom is 1*[or are] a Christian or Christians, shall be solemnized in accordance with the provisions of the next following section; and any such marriage solemnized otherwise than in accordance with such provisions shall be void.

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1 Ins. by Act 12 of 1891, s. 2 and Sch. II.

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Marriages may be solemnized in 1*[India]:

(1) By any person who has received episcopal ordination, provided that the marriage be solemnized according to the rules, rites, ceremonies and customs of the Church of which he is a Minister ;

(2) By any Clergyman of the Church of Scotland,

provided that such marriage be solemnized according to the rules, rites, ceremonies and customs of the Church of Scotland ;

(3) By any Minister of Religion licensed under this Act to solemnize marriages;

(4) By, or in the presence of, a Marriage Registrar appointed under this Act;

(5) By any person licensed under this Act to grant certificates of marriage between 1*[Indian] Christians.

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1 Subs. by Act 3 of 1951, S. 3 and Sch., for "Part A States and Part C States".

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The State Government, so far as regards the territories under its administration, 1* * * may, by notification in the Official Gazette 2* * *, grant licenses to Ministers of Religion to solemnize marriages within such territories 3 * * * and may, by a like notification revoke such licenses.

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1 The words " and the Central Government, so far as regards any Indian State " as amended by the A. O. 1937, for the original words, were rep. by the A. O. 1950.

2 The words "or in the Gazette of India, as the case may be" rep. by the A. O. 1937.

3 The words " and State, respectively," rep. by the A. O. 1950.

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The State Government may appoint one or more Christians, either by name or as holding any office for the time being, to be the Marriage Registrar or Marriage Registrars for any district subject to its administration. Senior Marriage Registrar: Where there are more Marriage Registrars than one in any district, the State Government shall appoint one of them to be the Senior Marriage Registrar.
Magistrate when to be marriage Registrar: When there is only one Marriage Registrar in a district, and such Registrar is absent from such district, or ill, or when his office is temporarily vacant, the Magistrate of the district shall act as, and be, Marriage Registrar thereof during such absence, illness, or temporary vacancy.


Rep. by the A. O. 1950



The State Government 1* * * may grant a license to any Christian, either by name or as holding any office for the time being, authorizing him to grant certificates of marriage between Indian Christians. Any such license may be revoked by the authority by which it was granted, and every such grant or revocation shall be notified in the Official Gazette.

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1. The words "or (so far as regards any Indian State) the Central Government " as amended by the A. O. 1937 for the original words, rep. by the A. O. 1950.

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Last updated on September, 2016

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