Is the procedure for Christian Marriage the same throughout India?

Last updated on Apr 8, 2022

The Indian Christian Marriage law, which governs the law of Christian marriages, is applicable throughout India, except in the states of Travancore-Cochin and Manipur. 

  • In Manipur, Christian marriages take place through customary rules and personal laws. 

Travancore-Cochin is currently part of the Indian states of Kerala and Tamil Nadu. In the Cochin area of Kerala, Christian marriages take place as per the Cochin Christian Civil Marriage Act of 1920.1 The Travancore portion of the former State spreads across the Southern parts of Kerala and Tamil Nadu. While Tamil Nadu has extended the application of the law to the entire State, including the portions of Travancore that are now a part of Tamil Nadu,2 Kerala has not done the same. So, in the Southern parts of Kerala, which were previously known as the state of Travancore, Christian marriages take place according to the internal laws of the Church, which will vary across denominations.3

  1. Alex Xavier v. State of Kerala, Kerala High Court, W. P (C) No. 24424 of 2008.[]
  2. Section 3, The Indian Christian Marriage (Extension to Transferred Territory) Act, 1995.[]
  3. Sujatha v. Jose Augustine,(1994) II DMC 442 : (1994) 2 KLT 4.[]

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