Since the marriage between the parties is dead for all practical purposes and there is no chance of it being retrieved, the continuance of such marriage would itself amount to cruelty, said the Court
The Allahabad High Court has observed that the mental agony of being arrested and detention in a Section 498A IPC case filed by wife against husband resulting into loss of reputation and prestige in the society would amount to cruelty.
Justice Pramod Kumar Srivastava made this observation in a second appeal against concurrent findings of the Court below which had dismissed the suit for divorce filed by the husband.
The High Court observed that the allegation of criminal misappropriation of stridhan, dowry demand and physical torture made by wife against the husband in her written statement, is nothing but mental cruelty of such a nature that appellant husband cannot be reasonably asked to live with the wife. The Court further observed “The allegation of serious nature, and as stated above, constitutes grave assault on the character, honour and reputation of husband. Such allegations amount to cruelty entitling the petitioner to a decree of divorce. It cannot be doubted that the appellant-husband must have suffered traumatic experience because of the criminal proceedings against his father, mother and himself. The arrest and getting bailed out for criminal offences must have resulted in the loss of reputation and prestige of the husband and his family in the society. The mental agony of being arrested and detention in a criminal case resulting into loss of reputation and prestige in the society would also amount to cruelty.”
The Court added “Mental cruelty and its effect cannot be stated with arithmetical accuracy. It varies from individual to individual, from society to society and also depends on the status of the persons. What would be mental cruelty in the life of two individuals belonging to a particular stratum of the society may not amount to mental cruelty in respect of another couple belonging to a different stratum of society. The agonized feeling or for that matter a sense of disappointment can take place by certain acts causing a grievous dent at the mental level. The inference has to be drawn from the attending circumstances.”
Granting the Decree of Divorce by allowing Second appeal, the Court observed that the relationship have reached to the point from where there appears no possibility of any harmonious conjugal relations or their being living together as husband and wife and discharging matrimonial duties.
Read the order here.