Introduction to Legality of Object
Section 23 of the Indian Contract Act has specified certain considerations and objects as unlawful. The consideration or objects of an agreement is lawful, unless- it is forbidden by law; is of such a nature that, if permitted, it would defeat the provision of any law; or is fraudulent; or involves injury to the person or property of another; or the court regards it as immoral or opposed to public policy. In each of the above mentioned cases the consideration or object of an agreement is deemed to be unlawful. Every agreement in which the object or consideration is unlawful is void.
The following agreements are considered to be against public policy:
- Trade with the enemy:
- An agreement between the citizens of two countries at war with each other is void and hence inoperative.
- Agreement in interference with the course of justice:
- All agreements which interfere with the normal course of law and justice are deemed to be opposed to public policy and hence are void.
- Agreements which injure the public services are considered to be void.
- Agreements infringing personal freedom
- Agreements hindering parental duties.
- Agreements hindering marital duties
For the cases coming under Section 23, one has to examine or see whether the section invalidates agreement on the ground of the objects or consideration is being unlawful. The three matters, (i) consideration for the agreement, (ii) object of the agreement and (iii) the agreement are also required to be kept in mind, and the three principles, arising from the Section – which are: (i) an agreement or contract is void, if its purpose is the commission of an illegal act; (ii) if it is expressly or impliedly prohibited by any law, and (iii) if its performance is not possible without disobedience of any law.
By – Shradha Arora
(Editor @ Legal Bites)