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Long Standing Domestic Dispute Constitutes 'Mental Cruelty' To Spouse Who Intends To Live In Peace: Madhya Pradesh HC

Sparsh Upadhyay
10 April 2022 5:10 PM GMT
Long Standing Domestic Dispute Constitutes Mental Cruelty To Spouse Who Intends To Live In Peace: Madhya Pradesh HC
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Dissolving a marriage on an appeal filed by the husband alleging cruelty at the hands of his wife, the Madhya Pradesh High Court recently observed that a long-standing dispute itself is mental cruelty to a party who intends to live in a domestic relationship and peace. The Bench of Justice Sheel Nagu and Justice Anand Pathak observed thus as it allowed the appeal filed by the...

Dissolving a marriage on an appeal filed by the husband alleging cruelty at the hands of his wife, the Madhya Pradesh High Court recently observed that a long-standing dispute itself is mental cruelty to a party who intends to live in a domestic relationship and peace.

The Bench of Justice Sheel Nagu and Justice Anand Pathak observed thus as it allowed the appeal filed by the appellant-husband against the judgment of the Family Court, Gwalior rejecting his application under Section 13 (1)(ia) of the Hindu Marriage Act 1955 seeking a divorce.

The case in brief

Before the High Court, the Husband submitted that he and his wife/respondent got married in the year 2004 and soon after their marriage, his wife compelled him to change his house, and therefore, he had to part ways with his parents and had to live with his wife in the nuclear family for domestic peace.

It was further submitted by the Court that out of their wedlock, two sons were born, out of which one was 14 years of age at the time of filing of the application and another son passed away at the age of 3 years due to alleged negligence of respondent/wife.

It was also submitted before the Court that she used to converse on mobile for hours together and whenever intercepted, reacted sharply and indulged in a verbal spat. It was also the allegation of the husband-appellant that she does not cooperate in cohabitation with the appellant and she always avoided him.

Having heard both the parties, the family court below REJECTED the husband's plea seeking divorce on the ground that after the solemnization of the marriage, treated the petitioner with cruelty. CHALLENGING the same, the husband moved to the HC

Court's observations

The Court perused the documents submitted, allegations leveled (as contained in the appeal), divorce application, and affidavit to note that for a considerable period of time, the appellant (husband) and respondent (wife) had shared domestic incompatibility.

The Court also noted that it appeared from the pleadings that the respondent-wife, constantly, for more than fifteen years or so, caused irritation, threat, intimidation and avoiding cohabitation on the pretext or the other collectively, and this, the Court concluded, entitled the appellant to get the decree of divorce.

Against this backdrop, the Court further remarked thus:

"When appellant specifically pleaded about the behaviour of respondent for last more than 15 years and different stages of dispute, reconciliation, and complaints from time to time were referred which indicate that both shared domestic incompatibility...it appears that for very long time parties shared domestic dispute and irritability and mental cruelty inflicted by the wife over her husband through her conduct and through her denial for cohabitation. In absence of any cross-examination or rebuttal, allegations of appellant assume importance."

Cumulatively, the Court held that the Family Court had ERRED in rejecting the application for divorce preferred by the appellant whereas the divorce decree OUGHT to have been passed in the case.

Resultantly, the appeal stood ALLOWED and the impugned judgment and decree dated passed by the Link Family Court, Gwalior was SET ASIDE and the Court held that the appellant-husband was ENTITLED to get a divorce from his wife.

Case title - Rajesh Bhoyale v. Smt. Mahadevi

Case citation: 

Click Here to Read/Download the order 

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