A. L. V. R. S. T. VEERAPPA CHETTIAR vs S. MICHAEL ETC. Supreme Court, 19-11-1962

CourtSupreme Court (India)
JudgeSUBBARAO,K.
Parties A. L. V. R. S. T. VEERAPPA CHETTIARS. MICHAEL ETC.
Docket NumberAppeal Civil 131-132 of 1960
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PETITIONER:
A. L. V. R. S. T. VEERAPPA CHETTIAR
Vs.
RESPONDENT:
S. MICHAEL ETC.
DATE OF JUDGMENT:
19/11/1962
BENCH:
SUBBARAO, K.
BENCH:
SUBBARAO, K.
IMAM, SYED JAFFER
AYYANGAR, N. RAJAGOPALA
CITATION:
1963 AIR 933 1963 SCR Supl. (2) 244
ACT:
Hindu Law-Asura marriage-Test of-Difference between Asura
and Brahma marriage-Presumption that every Hindu marriage is
in Brahma form-Objector must prove the contrary--Effect of
bridegroom bearing expenses of marriage-Kanyadan.
HEADNOTE:
The main question involved in both the appeals was whether
the marriage of Bangaru Ammal was in Asura form or in Brahma
form. The contention of the appellant was that it was not
in Asura form. Except a bare allegation in the plaint that
the said marriage was held in Asura form, the plaintiffs did
not give any particulars or set up any custom in the
community to which the parties to the marriage belonged.
They had given evidence that ’a sum of Rs. 1000 was paid as
’Parisam’ to the father of bride but that evidence had been
rejected by both the courts. Respondents pointed out to the
giving of Kambu by bridegroom’s party to the bride’s party
at the time of betrothal and expenditure of Rs. 300/- by
bridegroom’s party in connection with the marriage of
Bangaru Ammal and maintained that it was Asura marriage.
Held, that the marriage of Bangaru Ammal was not in Asura
form but in Brahma form. There was nothing to show that
there was a practice in the family to give Kambu as ’Parisam
for the bride or Kambu was paid as ’parisam’ at the time of
the betrothal ceremony in connection with the marriage of
Bangaru Ammal. The father of the bride had spent large
amounts and the bridegroom’s party had spent only about Rs.
300/- in connection with the said marriage. The expenditure
incurred by the bridegroom’s party was not and could not
have been the consideration for the father giving his
daughter in marriage. There is a presumption in Hindu Law
that every Hindu marriage is in Brahma form and that pre-
sumption has not been rebutted in this case. The court was
entitled to presume that the necessary ceremony of Kanyadan
must have been performed. As no consideration passed from
the bridegroom to the father of the bride, the father must
be held to have made a gift of the girl to the bridegroom.
245
The essence of the Asura marriage is the sale of a bride for
a price and it is one of the unapproved forms of marriage
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prohibited by Manu for all the four castes of Hindu society.
The vice of the said marriage lies in the receipt of the
price by the bride’s father or other persons entitled to
give away the bride as a consideration for the bride. If
the amount paid or the ornament given is not the
consideration for taking the bride but only given to the
bride or even to the bride’s father out of affection or in
token of respect to them or to comply with a traditional or
ritualistic form, such payment does not make the marriage an
Asura marriage. There is also nothing in the texts to
indicate that the bearing of the expenditure wholly or in
part by the bridegroom or his parents is a condition or a
criterion of such a marriage, for in such a case the bride’s
father or others entitled to give her in marriage do not
take any consideration for the marriage, or in any way
benefit thereunder. The fact that the bridgeroom’s party
bears the expenditure may be due to varied circumstances.
Prestige, vanity, social custom, the poverty or the
disinclination of the bride’s father or some of them may be
the reasons for the incurring of expenditure by bridegroom’s
father on the marriage but the money so spent is not the
price or consideration for the bride. Even in a case where
the bride’s father, though rich, is disinclined to spend a
large amount on the marriage functions and allows the
bridegroom to incur the whole or part of it, it cannot be
said that he has received any consideration or price for the
bride. Though in such a case if the bridegroom’s father had
not incurred the said expenditure in whole or in part, the
bride’s father might have to spend some money on that
account, such an indirect result could not be described as
price or consideration for giving the bride.
Asura marriage is a marriage where the bride’s father or any
other person entitled to give away the bride takes Sulka or
price for giving the bride in marriage. The test is two-
fold. There shall not only be a benefit to the father, but
that benefit shall form a consideration for the sale of the
bride. When this element of consideration is absent, such a
marriage cannot be described as Asura marriage.
Jaikisondas Gopaldas v. Harikisandas Hulleshandas
(1876) I. L. R. 2 Born. 9, Vijarangam v. Lakshman, (1871) 8
Born. H. C. Report. 244, Muthu Aiyar v. Chidambara Aiyar,
(1893) 3 M. L.,J. 261, Chunilal v. Surajram, (1909) I. L.R.
33 Born. 433, S. Authikesayulu Chetty v. S. Ramanvjan
Chetty" (1909) 1. L. R. 32 Mad. 512, Gabrielnathaswami v.
Valliammai Ammal, A. 1. R. 1920 Mad. 884, Ratnathanni v.
Somasundara
246
Mudaliar, (1921) 41 M. L. J. 76, Samu Asari v. Anachi Ammal,
(1925) 49 M. L. J. 554; Kailasanath Mudaliar v. Parasakthti
Vadivanni, (1934) I. L. R. 58 Mad. 488, Sivangalingam Pillai
v. K. V. Ambalayana Pillai, A. 1. R. 1938 Mad. 479; V. S.
Velavutha Pandaram v. S. Suryamurthi Pillai (1941) 2 M. L.
J. 770 and Vedakummapprath Pillai v. Kulathinkai Kuppan,
(1949) 2 M. L. J. 804, referred to.
JUDGMENT:
CIVIL, APPELLATE JURISDICTION: Civil Appeals Nos. 131 and
132 of 1960.
Appeals from the judgment and decree dated April 4, 1952, of
the Madras High Court in Appeal No. 816 of 1947 and No. 83
of 1948.
A. V. Yiswanatha Sastri, R. Ganapathy Iyer, K. Parasaran
and G. Gopalakrishnan, for the appellants.

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