I am a hindu residing in the US. I had married in 2001 in India but have been staying away from my 'husband' for the last 8 years. I now wish to marry again (in India). I have the following queries:
1. Do I have to seek divorce from my spouse? As I am told that section 494 has an exception if spouse's have been staying away from each other for over 7 years.
2. If answer to 1. is still yes, do I need my spouse's consent/presence in seeking a divorce?
3. If I go ahead and marry without getting a divorce, will my second marriage be void? If yes, how will the registrar come to know of my first marriage, given it happened 10 years ago and the records were on paper?
4. Assuming I marry without a divorce, any charges of bigamy (and hence prosecution) will only arise if my 1st spouse files for it?
5. If my second marriage occurs in the US and is registered in the US, will I still need to seek a divorce before registration?
Many thanks for your assistance.