“The two have exaggerated every minute aspect which occurred in day-to-day life and were finding fault with each other. Both, by their conduct, aggravated the worsening situation. Senseless mental torture continued all through when the two cohabited for four months. Tolerance, adjustments and respect to each other are totally absent. The marriage is a total wreck.”
The Delhi High Court in Sandhya Kumari vs. Manish Kumar, has dissolved their marriage as it could ‘clearly see that their marriage had broken down and they were inflicting mental torture, resulting in cruelty, on each other by raising false allegations against each other’.
A division bench of Justice Pradeep Nandrajog and Justice Pratibha Rani called the marriage a ‘total wreck’ and granted divorce to the husband, who had filed for it.
In this case, husband Manish Kumar had filed for dissolution of marriage and afterwards, wife Sandhya Kumari filed for restitution of conjugal rights. Both the matters were connected and decided together by the court.
According to Manish, his wife inflicted mental cruelty on her by having left her matrimonial house for several days just two days after their marriage and refusing to come back, citing reason that she did not have the time to cook meals for her husband and his family. He submitted that she would often pick quarrels with him at home and disrespect his parents very often. What majorly caused him mental agony was her act of unilaterally aborting their baby.
The wife denied all the allegations and said Manish’s family threw her out of her matrimonial home as she was unable to bring more dowry demanded by them. She also submitted that the abortion was a result of the beatings that she received from her husband and his family.
Upon appreciation of evidence, it was found by the court that the allegations were mere assertions and neither of the couple had any substantial evidence to support their claims. The court found that neither was the abortion a result of beatings, nor was it a unilateral decision of Sandhya to abort the baby without consulting her husband. Sandhya’s baby was aborted as the foetus was not viable and the parties involved were trying to take unnecessary advantage of an unfortunate event.
Similarly, Sandhya could also not prove her allegations of dowry demand by Manish and his family, just as Manish couldn’t prove the acts of cruelty as alleged by him in his petition for divorce on ground of cruelty.
Seeing how they levelled allegations, the court said:
“It is clear that the two were fighting each other from the beginning of their marital life and during the short period of four months, the two have deliberately created problem for each other. The two have exaggerated every minute aspect which occurred in day-to-day life and were finding fault with each other. Both, by their conduct, aggravated the worsening situation. Senseless mental torture continued all through when the two cohabited for four months. Tolerance, adjustments and respect to each other are totally absent. The marriage is a total wreck.”
Relying on the apex court’s judgment in previous cases such as Navin Kohli vs. Neelu Kohli (2006) 4 SCC 558, the court observed that the concept of cruelty has been blended by the courts with irretrievable breakdown of marriage.
Applying the finding in such cases, court held that:
“Where there is evidence that the husband and wife indulged in mutual bickering leading to remonstration and therefrom to the stage where they target each other mentally, insistence by one to retain the matrimonial bond would be a relevant factor to decide on the issue of cruelty, for the reason the obvious intention of said spouse would be to continue with the marriage not to enjoy the bliss thereof but to torment and traumatized each other.”
Thus, the court dissolved the marriage and dismissed the wife’s application for restitution of conjugal rights.
Read the Judgment here.
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