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In some significant observations, Allahabad High Court has noted that a marriage certificate is not a sina quo non to adopt a child under Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act, 1956.

The bench also observed that even a single parent can adopt a child.

The observations were made by a bench comprising Justice Dr. Kaushal Jayendra Thaker and Justice Vivek Varma while hearing a plea filed by Rina Kinnar, a transgender woman and her husband.

The couple had sought directions from the Sub Registrar, Hindu Marriage, District Varanasi to consider and decide on their online application for marriage.

Both the petitioners got married in December 2000. A few years later, they decided to adopt a child. They were asked to submit a marriage certificate under Hindu Marriage Act.

Thereafter, the couple filed an online application before Sub Registrar, Hindu Marriage, District Varanasi. However, their marriage could not be registered because of the transgender status of Rina Kinnar.

The High Court has directed the Registrar to pass a detailed order for their online application dated 3 December 2021 for marriage registration.

The bench disposed of the petition while clarifying, “For adopting a child, a marriage certificate is not sina-quo-non and as per Section 7 [Capacity of a male Hindu to take in adoption] and Section 8 [Capacity of a female Hindu to take in adoption] of the Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act, 1956, do not require marriage and or registration of marriage.”


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