Keyword(s):
Child, Child Marriage, Contracting Party, Minor

The Child Marriage Restraint Act, 1929
(19 of 1929)
An Act to restrain the solemnisation of child marriage.
Section 1 : Short title extent and commencement —
(1) This Act may be called the Child Marriage Restraint Act, (1929).
(2) It extends to the whole of India (except the State of Jammu and
Kashmir) and it applies also to all citizen of India without and beyond
India.
(3) It shall come into force on the 1st day of April, 1930.
Section 2 : Definitions — In this Act, unless there is anything repugnant in the
subject or context:
(a) “Child” means a person who, if a male, has not completed twenty
one year of age, and if a female, has not completed eighteen years of
age ;
(b) “child marriage” means a marriage to which either of the
contracting parties is a child ;
(c) “contracting party” to a marriage means either of the parties whose
marriage is (or is about to be) thereby solemnised and
(d) “minor” means a person of either sex who is under eighteen years
of age.
Section 3 : Punishment for male adult below twenty one years of age marrying a
child — Whoever, being a male above eighteen years of age and below twenty one,
contracts a child marriage shall be punishable with simple imprisonment which may
extend to fifteen days, or with fine which may extend to one thousand rupees, or
with both .
Section 4 : Punishment for male adult above twenty one years of age marrying a
child — Whoever, being a male above twenty one years of age, contracts a child
marriage shall be punishable with simple imprisonment which may extend to three
months and shall also be liable to fine.
Section 5 : Punishment for solemnising a child marriage — (1) Whoever
performs, conducts or directs any child marriage shall be punishable with simple
imprisonment which may extend to three months and shall also be liable to fine
unless he proves that he had reason to believe that the marriage was not a child –
marriage. Section 6 Punishment for parent or guardian concerned in a child marriage —
(1) Where a minor contracts a child marriage, any person having
charge of the minor, whether as parent or guardian or in any other
capacity, lawful or unlawful, who does any act to promote the
marriage or permits it to be solemnised, or negligently fails to prevent
it from being solemnised, shall be punishable with simple
imprisonment which may extend to three months and shall also be
liable to fine.
Provided no woman shall be punishable with imprisonment.
(2) For the purpose of this section, it shall be presumed unless and
until the contrary is proved, that where a minor has contracted a child
marriage, the person having charge of such minor has negligently
failed to prevent marriage from being solemnised.
Section 7 : Offences to be cognizable for certain purposes. The Code of Criminal
Procedure, 1973 (2 of 1974) shall apply to offences under this Act as if they were
cognizable offences –
(a) for the purpose of investigation of such offences : and
(b) for the purposes of matters other than (i) matters referred to in
Section 42 of that Code and (ii) the arrest of a person without a
warrant or without an order of a Magistrate.
Section 8 : Jurisdiction under this Act – Notwithstanding anything contained in
Section 190 of the (Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973) (2 of 1974), no Court other
than that of a Metropolitan Magistrate or a Judicial Magistrate of the first class shall
take cognizance of, or try, any offence under this Act.
Section 9 : Mode of taking cognizance of offences — No Court shall take
cognizance of any offence under this Act after the expiry of one year from the date
on which the offence is alleged to have been committed.
Section 10 : Preliminary inquiries into offences — Any Court, on receipt of a
complaint of an offence of which it is authorised to take cognizance, shall unless it
dismisses the complaint under Section 203 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973
(2 of 1974) either itself make an inquiry under Section 202 of that Code or direct a
Magistrate subordinate to it to make such inquiry.

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