CHENNAI: Deploring the lack of regulations to monitor matrimonial websites, the Madras High Court has directed the State government to formulate rules to regulate these sites in order to prevent fraudsters from cheating prospective brides.
Justice RMT Teekaa Raman issued the direction while rejecting an anticipatory bail plea filed by an alleged fraudster.
“This court is of the considered view that central or state government shall take the initiative for the formulation of rules governing matrimonial websites to ensure the basic information about bride or bridegroom (like age, date of birth, address) are duly verified before being uploaded in the website,” he said in a recent order.
He deplored that there are no rules, regulations, or even a Standard Operating Procedure (SOP), to monitor online matrimonial websites and check the authenticity of profiles hosted by either the bride or bridegroom
The judge added that measures providing for penal action for suppressing material facts, including previous marriage or divorce, must also be introduced to control such fraudsters.
“The state government shall form a committee to frame the rules for regulation in this regard as day-in and day-out criminal cases are registered on cheating,” Justice Teekaa Raman stressed.
The anticipatory bail application was moved by Prasanna @ Chakravarthy, who was booked by the Kelambakkam police for allegedly cheating a woman doctor in government service by posing as a doctor on a matrimonial website. He allegedly cheated the woman of 80 sovereigns of gold jewellery and Rs 16 lakh in cash, besides availing of a bank loan of Rs 52 lakh through her.
Although they were living together, he refused to register their marriage and defaulted on repayment of the loan. On realising he had allegedly pretended to be a doctor and swindled her by promising marriage, she lodged the complaint. The woman alleged that Prasanna had cheated 17 women through matrimonial sites, targeting older unmarried medical professionals by claiming to be a doctor in the UK.
The man had allegedly cheated 17 women through marriage sites by pretending to be a doctor employed in the UK. He allegedly targeted older unmarried women.