Published on: 31 December 2022 at 13:53 IST
Punjab and Haryana High Court bench of Justice Jasjit Singh Bedi while entertaining petition filed under Article 226 of the Constitution of India stated that, couples in a live-in relationship are entitled to protection of their life and liberty.
Punjab and Haryana High Court in Sonia Rani and anr. v. State of Punjab & Ors., was dealing with the petition filed under Article 226 of the Constitution of India for issuance of directions to respondents Nos. 2 and 3 to protect the life and liberty of the petitioners.
Facts of The Case:
Petitioners was in a “Live in Relationship”, solemnized marriage has two children out of the said wedlock. Now petitioner No.1 is in a live-in-relationship with petitioner No.2.
Mr. Gurmeet Singh Saini, counsel for the petitioner referred to the case of Pardeep Singh and another v. State of Haryana and others where the Court has granted protection in a case where the petitioners were living in a “Live in Relationship”.
Advocate Appearing for Petitioner submitted to the Court that the, “Relied upon the case of Amandeep Kaur & Anr. v. State of Punjab & Ors. where one of the parties was married and was living in with another person other than her husband, this Court had granted protection to the petitioners,”.
High Court decided, Whether the petition filed by the petitioner for issuance of directions to respondent Nos. 2 and 3 to protect the life and liberty of the petitioners could be accepted?
High Court referred to the case of Pardeep Singh and another v. State of Haryana and others., where it was held that “the Constitution of India is the Supreme Law of the land. Right to life and liberty is enshrined therein and is treated as a basic feature.
The said right includes the right of an individual to full development of his/her potential in accordance with his/her choice and wish and for such purpose, he/she is entitled to choose a partner of his/her choice. The individual also has the right to formalize the relationship with the partner through marriage or to adopt the non-formal approach of a liveinrelationship.”
The bench stated that even if the petitioners are living in a “Live in Relationship”, they are entitled to the protection of their life and liberty.
High Court opined that it goes without saying that the protection of life and liberty is a basic feature of the Constitution of India as emanating out of Article 21. Every person, more so, a major, has right to live his/her life with a person of his/her choice.
Whenever the Court, prima-facie, is satisfied that on account of some relatives/persons being unhappy with the relationship between the petitioners could cause harm to the life and liberty of the petitioners, then in such circumstances, the Courts are required to pass necessary directions for their protection.
In view of the above, the bench directed respondent no. 2 to consider the representation and to assess the threat perception to the petitioners.