Give im­por­tance to wishes of wife: HC

High Court says wife can leave mat­ri­mo­nial house if she is un­happy with the at­ti­tude of her in-laws

The Free Press Journal - - FRONT PAGE - NARSI BENWAL

Tak­ing note of the chang­ing lifestyle and in­creas­ing trend of nu­clear fam­i­lies, the Au­rangabad bench of the Bom­bay High Court re­cently said, it is high time that wife’s wishes are given im­por­tance just like that of a hus­band.

The High Court, ac­cord­ingly held, if a wife is un­happy with the at­ti­tude of her in-laws and sep­a­rates from her hus­band, she is en­ti­tled to main­te­nance.

“In our so­ci­ety, im­por­tance is given to the wishes of the hus­band. Even if wife is not com­fort­able with her in-laws, she has to fol­low the wishes of her hus­band and put up with them,” noted a bench presided over by Jus­tice Vish­was Jad­hav.

“How­ever, in the chang­ing sce­nario, im­por­tance needs to be be given to the wishes of the wife,” Jus­tice Jad­hav ruled.

The strong and rel­e­vant ob­ser­va­tions were made by Jus­tice Jad­hav while or­der­ing a man to pay Rs 700 per month as main­te­nance to his wife, who left his house within a year of their mar­riage.

It was the wife’s con­tention that soon af­ter mar­riage, her in-laws started ill-treat­ing her, as a re­sult of which, her hus­band used to ha­rass her. She fur­ther claimed that she con­tin­ued to live with her in-laws against her will only be­cause of her hus­band; how­ever, she was com­pelled to leave the mat­ri­mo­nial house af­ter the hus­band too started ha­rass­ing her.

All the al­le­ga­tions were de­nied by the hus­band, a ma­son by pro­fes­sion, on the ground that the wife hardly lived with him for 15 to 20 days and picked up quar­rels with his fam­ily mem­bers.

Hav­ing con­sid­ered the con­tentions, Jus­tice Jad­hav said, “If the wife is not com­fort­able be­cause of the ap­proach and at­ti­tude of the par­ents of her hus­band and the treat­ment given to her by them, and if she re­sides with her par­ents be­cause of the said rea­son, in my con­sid­ered opin­ion, the wife has a just cause to live sep­a­rately and de­mand main­te­nance.”

“The hus­band has failed to sub­stan­ti­ate his con­tention that his wife is stay­ing with her par­ents with­out any just cause. In view of the same, I re­ject his ap­pli­ca­tion seek­ing resti­tu­tion of con­ju­gal rights,” Jus­tice Jad­hav said.

While con­sid­er­ing the quan­tum of main­te­nance, the bench noted the in­come of the hus­band, his li­a­bil­i­ties and re­spon­si­bil­i­ties. “Af­ter hav­ing due re­gard to the sta­tus of the par­ties, the amount of main­te­nance of Rs 700 ap­pears to be just and rea­son­able,” Jus­tice Jad­hav said.

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