3 Jan 2023 5:30 AM GMT
The Gujarat High Court recently observed that a husband is dutybound to provide financial support to his legally wedded wife and children and he cannot evade the responsibility to maintain them. Justice Samir J. Dave added that being a father and a husband, the man has a social and lawful duty towards providing the same standard of living to his wife and children that they enjoyed before...
The Gujarat High Court recently observed that a husband is dutybound to provide financial support to his legally wedded wife and children and he cannot evade the responsibility to maintain them.
Justice Samir J. Dave added that being a father and a husband, the man has a social and lawful duty towards providing the same standard of living to his wife and children that they enjoyed before the separation.
"It is the duty of the husband to maintain his wife and to provide financial support to her and their children and he cannot shirk his responsibility as husband as well as father to maintain his legally wedded wife and children, which is his social and lawful duty towards them and the wife and children would be entitled to the same standard of living, which they were enjoying while living with them."
The applicant-husband and the respondent-wife got married in 2008 and a girl child was born in the wedlock. Subsequently, the couple faced matrimonial disputes, which eventually led to them living apart.
Thereafter, the husband moved the Family Court seeking the daughter's custody while the wife filed another application seeking maintenance. This was followed by the applicant filing several applications for the custody of the child.
However, the Family Court directed the applicant to pay the wife Rs. 10,000 and Rs. 5,000 for the daughter towards monthly maintenance.
Aggrieved by this, the applicant moved the High Court.
The Single Judge analysed the facts of the case and recalled that the objective of Section 125 of CrPC was to deliver prompt relief to the applicant.
"An application under Section 125 CrPC. is predicated on two conditions : (1) the husband has sufficient means; and (2) “neglects” to maintain his wife, who is unable to maintain herself. In such a case, the husband may be directed by the Magistrate to pay such monthly sum to the wife, as deemed fit. Maintenance is awarded on the basis of the financial capacity of the husband and other relevant factors."
In this case, the husband was found to have been earning Rs.5,00,000 per month. It was on this ground that the Family Court had granted maintenance to his wife and daughter, considering the necessary expenses and the ongoing inflation.
As observed in Rajnesh v. Neha & Ors [(2021) 2 SCC 324], the maintenance amount awarded must be reasonable and realistic; it should neither be so extravagant which becomes oppressive and unbearable for the respondent nor should it be so meagre that it drives the wife to penury.
In this context, the High Court found that the Family Court had granted the maintenance amount rightly after considering the husband's income.
The applicant was thereby directed to clear the arrears amount of the maintenance as awarded by the Family Court. As such, the revision petition was dismissed.
Advocates Pratik Y. Jasani and Urvesh M. Prajapati appeared for the applicants and APP RC Kodekar appeared for the State in the matter.
Case Title: Shripal Raja Rajendrakumar Shah v. State of Gujarat & Ors
Case Citation: 2023 Livelaw (Guj) 2
Click Here To Read/Download The Order