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Supreme Court of India
Badri Prasad vs Dy. Director Of Consolidation And ... on 1 August, 1978
Equivalent citations: 1978 AIR 1557, 1979 SCR (1) 1
Author: V Krishnaiyer
Bench: Krishnaiyer, V.R.
           PETITIONER:
BADRI PRASAD

	Vs.

RESPONDENT:
DY. DIRECTOR OF CONSOLIDATION AND ORS.

DATE OF JUDGMENT01/08/1978

BENCH:
KRISHNAIYER, V.R.
BENCH:
KRISHNAIYER, V.R.
DESAI, D.A.
REDDY, O. CHINNAPPA (J)

CITATION:
 1978 AIR 1557		  1979 SCR  (1)	  1
 1978 SCC  (3) 527
 CITATOR INFO :
 R	    1989 SC1872	 (4)


ACT:
     Presumption in favour of valid marriage, law regarding-
Law leans  in  favour  of  legitimacy-Proof  by	 eye-witness
evidence after half a century not permissible.



HEADNOTE:
     Dismissing the special leave petition, the Court
^
     HELD: If  man and woman who live as husband and wife in
society are  compelled to  prove,  after  half-a-century  of
wedlock by  eye-witness	 evidence  that	 they  were  validly
married fifty  years earlier,  few will	 succeed. ` A strong
presumption arises  in favour of wed-lock where the partners
have lived  together for  a long  spell as husband and wife.
Although the  presumption IS rebuttable, a heavy burden lies
on him	who seeks  to deprive  the relationship of its legal
origin. Law  leans in  favour of  legitimacy and frowns upon
bastardy. [1 F-H]



JUDGMENT:

CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION: Special Leave Petition (Civil) Nos. 1731 and 927 of 1978.

From the Judgment and order dated 3-11-76 of the Allahabad High Court (Lucknow Bench) in W.P. 116 of 1971 and from the Judgment and order dated 5-8-77 of the Allahabad High Court (Lucknow Bench) in Revision Application No. 29/77 respectively.

R. K. Garg, Madan Mohan and V. J. Francis for the Petitioner.

The order of the Court was delivered by KRISHNA IYER, J.-For around 50 years, a man and a woman, as the facts in this case unfold, lived as husband and wife. An adventurist challenge to the factum of marriage between the two, by the petitioner in this special leave petition, has been negatived by the High Court. A strong presumption arises in favour of wed-lock where the partners have lived together for a long spell as husband and wife. Although the presumption is rebuttable, a heavy burden lies on him who seeks to deprive the relationship of legal origin. Law leans in favour of legitimacy and frowns upon bastardy. In this view, the contention of Shri Garg, for the petitioner, that long after the alleged marriage, evidence has not been produced to sustain its ceremonial process by examining the priest or other witnesses, deserves no consideration. If man and woman who live as husband and wife in society are compelled to prove, half a century later, by eye-witness evidence that they were validly married, few will succeed. The contention deserves to be negatived and we do so without hesitation. The special leave petitions are dismissed.

S.R.					Petitions dismissed.
2