A Division Bench of Apex Court held that, the second marriage has to be proved by establishing the ceremonies constituting the same have been gone through for an offence of Bigamy to be made out.
As pointed out earlier, this Court in Kanwal Ram’s case has laid down that an admission is not evidence of the fact that the second marriage has taken place after the ceremonies constituting the same have been gone through.
Towards the end of Judgment:
Priya Bala Ghosh Vs Suresh Chandra Ghosh on 4 Mar 1971
Further as pointed out by this Court in Kawal Ram’s case, the admission in Ex. 2 cannot in law be treated as evidence of the second marriage having taken place in an adultery or bigamy case: and that in such cases it must be proved by the prosecution that the second marriage as a fact has taken place after the performance of the essential ceremonies. Mr. Majumdar relied on the decision of this Court in Bharat Singh and another vs. Bhagirathi(1) to the effect that the admissions made by a party are substantive evidence by themselves in view of ss. 17 and 21 of the Indian Evidence Act, and that if those admissions have been duly proved they can be relied on irrespective of the fact whether the party making them appear in the witness box or not or irrespective of the fact whether such a party had or had not been confronted with those admissions. We do not think that the said decision in any way supports the appellant with regard to prosecution for bigamy under s. 494 I.P.C. To conclude, we have already referred to the fact that both the learned Sessions Judge and the High Court have categorically found that the Homo and Saptapadi are the essential rites-for a marriage according to the law governing the parties and that there is no evidence that these two essential ceremonies have been performed when the respondent is stated to have married Sandhya Rani. No reliance can be placed on the admissions stated to be contained in Ex. 2.
Citations : [1972 CRI LJ 275], [1971 SCC 1 864], [1971 SCC CRI 362], [1971 SCR 3 961], [1971 AIR SC 1153], [1971 CRLJ SC 939]
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