Karnataka High Court: Caste Wife May Acquire the Caste of her Husband in Some Circumstances


Tanvi Pilane

Published on: March 23, 2022 at 11:41 IST

A Single-judge Bench of Justice Krishna S Dixit of the Karnataka High Court rejected a Petition by a Gram Panchayat Member challenging an order preventing her from contesting as a member of a Scheduled Tribe (ST) community as the Court said that she did not belong to the community by birth and had not proved that she belonged to the community through marriage.

The Court noted that usually the caste of a person is determined by birth but in rare circumstances, a lady can acquire the caste status of her husband.

The Petitioner who was a member of the Gram Panchayat from a constituency reserved for members of Scheduled Tribes had been unseated from her position through an order by a Civil Judge on the grounds of lack of social status.

Subsequently, she filed the present Petition challenging the order.

The Bench noted that a woman may acquire the caste status of her husband if the said woman pleads and proves admission to the community and is socially accepted.

The Petitioner, however, had not taken this stance in her objections to the Election Petition, therefore it cannot be taken in the writ petition, the Court held.

The Court did not accept the Petitioner’s contention that no fair opportunity was given to her because she had appeared in person and sought time to engage an advocate as the Petitioner had remained absent even after three adjournments had been granted, without any plausible explanation.

The Court while dismissing the petition, observed that the Petitioner was an elected representative of people and not a peasant or labourer, and thus she cannot seek leniency.

Also read:


Procedure of filing an Election Petition in the Supreme Court

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