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Krish (Student)     11 December 2015

How to perform gandharva vivaah?

Respected lawyers,

Me (28) and my girlfriend (26) are both Brahmin (Hindu). I came to know that Hindu marriage act accepts 8 kinds of marriage including Gandharva marriage. I've few questions..

1. What is Gandharva Vivaah and how is it performed? (i mean i've a brief idea but want to know in more detail)

2. How is it different from a live-in relationship?

3. How to prove the marrige if i had to somewhere? Do i get marriage certificate like in others?

4. Do i need to go to court or municipal corporation office? What will be approximate expenses?


Hoping a favorable reply from you soon.

Thanks in advance!


 5 Replies

Rama chary Rachakonda (Secunderabad/Highcourt practice watsapp no.9989324294 )     12 December 2015

Now every type of marriages are required marriage registration with sub - registrar. As far as gandharva vivaha is concern, you can go to any major temples recognised by endowments departmnet of government, the temple authorities provides facilities for marriages and issue a certificate from the govenrment. This is a good way for gandhrava viviaha. No much expenses, etc. Visit TTD.,Bhadrachalam temples websites.

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Gandharva Vivaah: When a man and a woman marry for love and without the consent and participation of their families, that marriage is called Gandharva Vivaah or 'love marriage.' 

This form of marriage was started according to ANTHARVAVEDA.

 The translated version of the Atharvaveda (STRIKARATÂNI, ii.36) passage is:

May O Agni!, a suitor after our own heart come to us,
may he come to this maiden with fortune!
May she be agreeable to suitors, charming at festivals, promptly obtain happiness through a husband!

As this comfortable cave, O Indra!, furnishing a safe abode hath become pleasing to all life,
thus may this woman be a favourite of fortune, beloved, not at odds with her husband!

Do thou ascend the full, inexhaustible ship of fortune;
upon this bring, hither the suitor who shall be agreeable to thee!

Bring hither by thy shouts, O lord of wealth, the suitor
bend his mind towards her;
turn thou the attention of every agreeable suitor towards her!

But legally not valid as it does not have the participatioin of elders of both the sides and the absence of witnesses too.Not recognised as per HMA.


The Act calls marriage solemnized under the Act as hindu marriage which may be performed in accordance with the shastric rites and ceremonies or in accordance with the customary ceremonies prevalent in the community to which the bride or Bridegroom belongs.


The glaring example of gandharva vivaha is between Sakuntala and Dushyanta.



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Krish (Student)     13 December 2015

Thank you to both of you sir.. My doubts are clear now.

T. Kalaiselvan, Advocate (Advocate)     22 December 2015

Gandharva vivaah  is one of the eight classical types of Hindu marriage. This ancient marriage tradition from the Indian subcontinent was based on mutual attraction between a man and a woman, with no rituals, witnesses or family participation.

The Smritis of Hinduism recognize eight methods of marriage, one of them being Gandharva marriage. The other seven are: Brahma,DaivaArsaPrajapatyaAsuraRaksasa and Paisacha.

Gandharva marriage is, an ancient Hindu literature, the method of marriage where the girl selects her own husband. They meet each other of their own accord, consensually agree to live together, and their relationship is consummated in copulation born of passion. This form of marriage did not require consent of parents and anyone else.


In 1946, the Patna High Court in Kamani Devi v. Kameshwar Singh, ILR 25 Pat 58 = (AIR 1946 Pat 316) held that the relationship of husband and wife, created by Gandharva marriage is binding. The husband, the court ruled, cannot escape his liability of maintaining his wife married in Gandharva form. The Patna High Court went further and held that the celebration of Gandharva form of marriage must be attended with nuptial rites and ceremonies including Homa (invocation before the sacred fire) and Saptapadi (the taking of seven steps by the bride-groom and the bride together) for its validity, This ruling was cited in a decision by the Supreme Court in the case of Bhaurao v. State of Maharashtra.

In a 1974 case, Judge Mukherji noted, "Gandharva form of marriage should not be regarded as concubinage or quasi-marital union, more so in the context of the modern Society and in the background of the forward thinking of the present law givers. The possibility of legal validity of this form of marriage in the whole of India in near future even without being backed by custom, is too notorious to be ignored. In a sense, Gandharva form of marriage is trying to come back very fast (in India), pushing parental domination to the background.

In modern India, particularly in urban regions, gandharva marriages are re-emerging. These self-arranged marriages in India are now called love marriages. Most of these, however, do involve some form of ceremony where friends and members of family are present.

Whatever it may be, any form of marriage performed under any personal law need to be registered for its validity as per prevailing matrimonial laws of the counrty.

You can get your marriage performed under the title of the query registerd by producing evidences before a marriage registrar within your juridiction. 

MikeWalker   06 September 2017

Gandhrva vivah is a traditional marriage which is held in temple. You should geta marriage certificate after your marriage. It is important for you to get that certificate from the office and it is a proof of your marriage.

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