Allahabad High Court has ruled that couples seeking to solemnise their marriage under the Special Marriage Act, 1954 can choose not to publish the mandatory 30-day notice of their intention to marry. The court said the publication of such notices "would invade in the fundamental rights of liberty and privacy". They would also affect the couple's freedom to choose marriage "without interference from state and non-state actors", the court said. Section 5 of the Special Marriage Act, the legislation that allows solemnisation of marriages irrespective of the religion of the couple, requires parties to give a 30-day public notice of their intention to marry. In a 47-page judgment on January 12, Justice Vivek Chaudhary said couples can now give a written request to the Marriage Officer "to publish or not to publish a notice".
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