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Honour killing guillotines individual liberty: Supreme Court (Relevant for GS Mains Paper II)

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Honour killing guillotines individual liberty, freedom of choice and one’s own perception of choice.

1. It has to be sublimely borne in mind that when two adults consensually choose each other as life partners, it is a manifestation of their choice which is recognized under Articles 19 and 21 of the Constitution, the Supreme Court said.

2. “Such a right has the sanction of the constitutional law and once that is recognised, the said right needs to be protected and it cannot succumb to the conception of class honour or group thinking,” the Bench also said. The observations were made in an order which termed as illegal the interference by Khap Panchayats in marriages between two consenting adults.

3. Effect on larger society

The Bench further said that when the ability to choose is crushed in the name of class honour and the person’s physical frame is treated with absolute indignity, a chilling effect dominates over the brains and bones of the society at large.

4. When two adults marry out of their volition, they choose their path, they consummate their relationship; they feel that it is their goal and they have the right to do so. And it can unequivocally be stated that they have the right and any infringement of the said right is a constitutional violation.

 (Adapted from One India)

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