Written by a Diksha Sharma student at Government Law College in Mumbai, the divorced student should be provided with simple living accommodation rather than luxury
Swapna Rani Sahoo versus Niranjan Sahoo
A marital dispute was brought before a family court when the respondent, who is the husband, appealed to the court against her wife, who allegedly misbehaved towards her in-laws using swear words and other inappropriate behavior. The complainant went to her parents’ house with her child and did not inform the respondent about her whereabouts. An appeal was made to dissolve the marriage for cruelty. In response, however, the Appellant denied any such allegation, alleging that the Respondent had filed a divorce notice in order to satisfy his personal motive, knowing that the Respondent was having an extramarital affair with one of his employees. The learned judge, the family court, permitted the divorce prayer by rejecting all allegations made by the applicant and ruling that the woman was not subject to permanent alimony. The complainant was affected by the decision and went to the High Court.
Is the complainant entitled to maintenance?
• Section 13, Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 – Divorce
• Section 25, Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 – Alimony and Child Support
Allegation of the complainant:
The applicant alleged that the judgment was unlawful and that the learned judge made a mistake in finding that the wife had committed cruelty against the husband. The woman alleged that the interviewee had entered into a second marriage before the appeal period and provided evidence that the second marriage took place well before the appeal period. The complainant also alleged that she suffered from breast cancer despite living with her in-laws while the respondent lived in a separate house with a newly married woman.
Therefore, it is prayed that the judgment of the learned judge, the family court, be reversed.
Statement of the respondent:
The interviewee presented evidence that he had entered into a second marriage after the divorce decree of the first marriage and presented a birth certificate of the female child from the second marriage along with a marriage photo.
Observation of the court:
The court found that the learned judge, the family court, had wrongly failed to give the applicant permanent maintenance, but the court was not inclined to overturn the divorce decree just because the respondent was remarried. The court ruled that under the Hindu Marriage Act of 1955, the applicant should be granted alimony after taking into account the husband’s income and age. It was considered appropriate to establish permanent maintenance and cover the cost of the illegitimate child from the first marriage.
The court ordered the respondent to pay an amount of Rs. 7.00,000 / – as maintenance and to secure the complainant with residential accommodation.