12 Feb 2021 3:54 AM GMT
The Tripura High Court on Wednesday held that denial of maintenance allowance by a husband to his wife causes economic abuse to her within the meaning of sec. 3 of the Domestic Violence Act, 2005. A criminal revision petition was filed by the petitioner husband challenging the Additional Sessions Judge judgment dated 18th July 2020. The impugned judgment held that the husband committed acts...
The Tripura High Court on Wednesday held that denial of maintenance allowance by a husband to his wife causes economic abuse to her within the meaning of sec. 3 of the Domestic Violence Act, 2005.
A criminal revision petition was filed by the petitioner husband challenging the Additional Sessions Judge judgment dated 18th July 2020. The impugned judgment held that the husband committed acts of domestic violence upon his wife and ordered for grant of monetary relief in the form of maintenance of Rs. 15,000 per month to be given to the wife under sec. 20(1)(d) of the Act.
The petitioner husband challenged the grant of monthly maintenance by arguing that he had medical expenses of his old ailing mother on his shoulders and education expenses of his son whose custody rested with him.
On the other hand, it was the case of the respondent wife that since the petitioner was a government employee receiving a monthly salary of Rs. 50,000 per month, he was eligible enough of maintaining his wife. Moreover, it was argued that the monetary relief granted under sec. 20 of the Act is different from maintenance granted under sec.125 Cr.P.C.
Justice S.G. Chattopadhyay while interpreting sec. 20 (Monetary reliefs) read with sec. 3 (Definition of Domestic Violence) of the Act observed as follows:
"Under Section 3 of the DV Act which defines domestic violence, 'economic abuse' is a form of domestic violence. Clause (iv) of explanation I of Section 3 relates to 'economic abuse' which includes deprivation of all or any economic financial resources to which the aggrieved person is entitled under any law or custom whether payable under an order of a court or otherwise."
Coming to the facts of the present case, the Court observed that the wife was legally entitled to the maintenance allowance from the petitioner husband being a government salaried employee. The Court also took note of the fact that since the lady was a housewife living separately without any source of living, the Court thus held:
"In these circumstances, denial of maintenance allowance to the wife obviously causes 'economic abuse' to her within the meaning of domestic violence as under Section 3 of the DV Act. There is, therefore, no infirmity in the impugned judgment"
In view of this, the Court upheld the judgment of the Additional Sessions Judge directing the husband to pay Rs. 15,000 monthly maintenance allowance to his wife.
Case Name: Ramendra Kishore Bhattacharjee v. Smt. Madhurima Bhattacharjee Crl. Rev. P. No. 36 of 2020
Judgment Dated: 10.02.2021
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