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Legal validity of Sagai or Betrothal

By Shivendra Pratap Singh

What is the legal validity of sagai? Sagai or Betrothal is a contract of marriage. According to Manu when a girl a is promised in marring to one man, the good men do not give her in marriage to another man.

Sagai or Betrothal is a contract of marriage. According to Manuwhen a girl a is promised in marring to one man, the good men do not give her in marriage to another man.

Sagai is a valid agreement, both parties to the agreement are bound to perform their liability unless any certain specific defect is discovered or both parties have a better choice to marry another person.

According to Narada a man who withdraws from his contract without proper cause may be compelled to marry the girl against his will. However, the above-mentioned view is not applicable and irrelevant today but a party who suffered a loss due to withdraw of the agreement has the right claim special damages which are caused to him.

In Pursottam vs Pursottam it has held by the court that if some money has spent on fest or other things, as part of the celebration of sagai, the amount to spent may be recovered as special damage.

In some parts of India custom allows a man who has a wife living to contract a sagai marriage if he is a childless man, if she begot child then she shall be entitled to maintenance, the child would take the property as legal heir.

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