Divorce must for better future of couple if cruelty involved: HC : The Tribune India

Divorce must for better future of couple if cruelty involved: HC

Divorce must for better future of couple if cruelty involved: HC

Tribune News Service

Saurabh Malik

Chandigarh, February 15

The Punjab and Haryana High Court has ruled that granting divorce was “a necessary step” in the process of healing and moving towards a healthier future for a couple, whose marriage had broken down irretrievably, was not consummated and involved cruelty.

False dowry case

  • The Bench of Justice Ritu Bahri and Justice Ashok Kumar Verma granted divorce to a man, whose wife stayed with him for just 15 days and lodged an FIR alleging demand for dowry. Their marriage could also not be consummated.
  • The Bench asserted the wife had lodged an FIR after accusing the appellant-husband and his family of demanding dowry just after three months of marriage. But her testimony before the family court, regarding dowry-less marriage, demolished her case.

The Bench also ruled that efforts to “harass” and “torture” a husband amounted to “cruelty”, which was a ground for divorce. The assertions came as the Bench of Justice Ritu Bahri and Justice Ashok Kumar Verma granted divorce to a man, whose wife stayed with him for just 15 days and lodged an FIR alleging demand for dowry. Their marriage could also not be consummated.

The Bench asserted the wife had lodged an FIR after accusing the appellant-husband and his family of demanding dowry just after three months of marriage. But her testimony before the family court, regarding dowry-less marriage, demolished her case.

Speaking for the Bench, Justice Verma added the wife initiated criminal proceedings just after living 15 days in her matrimonial home and after merely three months of the marriage and that too “without having patience to wait and make efforts to reconcile the dispute amicably”. It was clear that she was trying to inflict mental cruelty under the garb of criminal proceedings, which entitled him to divorce, said Justice Verma.

Justice Verma added the High Court, too, tried to reconcile the dispute amicably. The husband was ready to pay Rs 15 lakh as a permanent alimony, but the respondent-wife was not ready for a divorce by way of mutual consent. It was also an admitted fact that the marriage was not consummated from the first day. The court was of the considered opinion that the wife had made every effort to harass and torture the husband, which itself amounted to “cruelty”.

Justice Verma added the analysis and evaluation of the entire evidence made it evident that the wife had resolved to live in agony only to make life a miserable hell for the husband. It was also clear that the marriage had broken down irretrievably as they were living separately since May 2015 and there was no chance of their coming or living together again.

“In the present case, granting divorce is a necessary step in the process of healing and moving to a healthier future of both the parties,” Justice Verma added, while allowing the divorce plea.

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