The Punjab and Haryana High Court recently said that a parent cannot be held guilty of kidnapping his or her own child as both parents are equal natural guardians. The high court observed while quashing a complaint that accused a woman of kidnapping her child from the residence of her in-laws. The high court bench of Justice Harpreet Singh Brar stated that to establish the offence of kidnapping, the minor child should have been taken away from the custody of a "lawful guardian". "However, a mother falls well within the ambit of 'lawful guardian,' especially in absence of an order divesting her of the same passed by a competent Court. This Court is of the view that a parent cannot be held guilty of the offence of kidnapping as both the parents of the child are her equal natural guardians," the court said. Punjab and Haryana High Court Upholds Visitation Rights of Alleged Drug Addict Father, Says 'A Parent May Be Morally Bad in Societal Sense but May Be Good for Child'.

HC on Lawful Guardian

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