This article is written by Rakchit Mishra.
Table of Contents
Facts of the case
Naveen Kohli (appellant) and Neelu Kohli (respondent) got married on 20th November, 1975 after those three sons were born out of their marriage. Appellant constructed three factories with a purpose to provide distinct factories to each of his sons and also constructed a shack for their accommodation. All of their three sons were well educated in the general school of Nanital. The respondent is a woman of of bad personality and impertinent behavior as stated by the appellant. Also after the marriage respondent started fighting and behaving in bad manner with the appellant and his parents by which the appellant was forced to leave the family home and started staying in the rented house also the respondent by the help of her parents got enough of the business and property shifted to her name.
The appellant claimed that when he went Bombay with the respondent and his three sons to attend the golden jubilee marriage anniversary of his father in law then he saw that the respondent was pleasing in a rude manner and also saw that she was in a position of agreement with the person named Biswas Rout, soon after that the appellant started staying differently from the respondent in the rented house and also he suffered extreme physical and mental persecution. After that both the parties made several levelled allegations against each other & the principal judge of the family court framed some of the issues relating to the case and from there this matter was brought to the Supreme Court.
Arguments from the side of the appellant
The respondent transferred an amount of 950000 from the bank account of the appellant. he also claimed that the respondent has registered two untrue reports against him under some of the sections of the IPC and also attempts were made from the side of the respondent to get him detained in the police station Panki in the city of Kanpur. He also filed a civil suit against the respondent claiming that he was pushed on the instructions of the respondent and as per the reports a complaint was registered against the appellant by the eldest son (Nitin Kohli) on the instructions of the respondent that the appellant has beaten him. He claimed that the complained made by the respondent against his lawyer and friend regarding the criminal harassment was untrue.
As per the statement of the appellant the complaint made by the respondent before company law board under sections of Companies Act and as she said that appellant was wicked, alcoholic, having affairs with many girls since marriage, criminal, idolator and her manager to diminish his position from owner to an employee was also incorrect. He also mentioned that the respondent has filed a fake case regarding the mishandling against him. He was called in the police station many times and was questioned by the police but only after he gave a written text then the inspection was found to be incorrect and then he was able to save him from the imprisonment. As mentioned by the appellant that all of the relations were ended between them by the act of the respondent in which she sent a notice for breaking the nucleus and was asking for the division of the properties also she stated that her share would be given within 15 days. He deposited 5 lakhs as said by the court but that was not drawn back by the respondent instead, she got non bailable warrants against him and he was harassed by the police also he got a arrest stay order from the High Court.
Arguments from the side of the respondent
Respondent has mentioned before the trial court that she has registered a complaint against the appellant under some of the sections of the IPC at the police station, Kotwali and she has also gone to that extent of filing a warning in the High Court for the criminal case by which the appellant may not able to get an order from the High Court against her for filing a criminal case. she has also filed a complaint against the appellants mother at the police station Kohna.
She has also confessed that she was against the bail of the appellant in the criminal case filed against him and she has also filed a protest petition after the final report was filed by the police in both the cases related to police station in Kotwali and Kohna which illustrated that she was having an enormous feeling of revenge against the appellant. She also made attempts to send appellant in jail by filing a case in the parliament street police station new Delhi. She also filed a complaint under section 24 of Hindu Marriage Act regarding the payment of the maintenance during the awaiting attention of the case. She admitted in her statement that the advertisement regarding the appellant was the employee not the owner was published in the newspaper and also stated that she didn’t remember whether she told him a fake, criminal person or not but she didn’t denied of using misuse against him.
- Whether the respondent handled the plaintiff with cruelty by using registering many criminal cases, getting the information published and initiating civil court cases?
- Whether the defendant handled the plaintiff with cruelty by way of her objectionable behavior as stated inside the plaint?
- Whether the respondent has made fake allegation in opposition to the plaintiff?
- Whether the presence of plaintiff, the defendant displayed her behavior with Dr. Viswas Rout which comes within the category of immorality?
- Whether the petition is not maintainable on the basis of initial objections 1 to 3 of the written declaration?
- Whether the plaintiff has saved Smt. Shivangi with him as his concubine?
- Whether the shape of the plaintiff is barred by way of the provisions of Section 11, C.P.C?
- Whether the plaintiff is entitled to get the decree of dissolution of marriage against defendant?
- Whether the plaintiff is entitled to get any other relief?
Issues number 1 and 2 relate to the term ‘Cruelty’ and Issue number 3 is regarding effect of fake allegations levelled by the respondent against the appellant. All those three issues were determined in favor of the appellant and against the respondent. The discovered Trial Court came to a exact end that the respondent had filed a totally big range of cases in opposition to the appellant and were given him stressed and tortured by way of the police. It also declared him an employee of the manufacturing unit of which the respondent is a proprietor through getting an advertisement issued in the newspaper. According to findings of the Trial Court, the appellant turned into mentally, bodily and financially burdened and tortured by way of the respondent. The Trial Court framed unique issue whether the appellant had kept Smt. Shivangi with his concubine. This allegation has been denied by using the appellant. The respondent had did not produce any witness in admire of the aforesaid said allegation and become therefore now not able to show the identical. The Trial Court stated that each party have levelled allegations of character assassination in opposition to every other however failed to show them.
Judgement given by the court
This appeal is directed in opposition to the judgment of the Allahabad High Court dated 07.07.03 handed through the division Bench in First appeal no. 323 of 2003. The appellant and the respondent are husband and wife. The appellant has filed a petition below the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 for divorce. The Family Court after comprehensively manage the problem ordered cancellation of marriage between the parties beneath Section 13 of the Hindu Marriage Act which was solemnized on 20.11.1975 and directed the appellant to pay Rs. 5,00,000 as her livelihood allowance. The appellant deposited the quantity as directed. The respondent aggrieved by using the stated judgment desired first appeal before the division Bench of the Allahabad High Court.
After listening to the events, the enchantment changed into allowed and the decree exceeded by the Family Court, Kanpur City in search of divorce and annulment of the wedding became disregarded. The appellant aggrieved by the said judgment of the High Court had desired unique leave petition beneath Article 136 of the Constitution of India. This Court granted unique leave to attraction to the appellant. The findings of the High Court that those court cases could not be taken to be such which may also warrant annulment of marriage is utterly unsustainable. Even at this stage, the respondent does no longer need divorce by using mutual consent. From the evaluation and assessment of the complete proof, it is miles clear that the respondent has resolved to stay in pain useful to make lifestyles a depressing hell for the appellant as nicely. This type of adamant and callous mindset within the context of the facts of this example leaves no way of doubt in our mind that the respondent is bent upon treating the appellant with mental cruelty. It is abundantly clear that the marriage between the parties had damaged down irretrievably and there is no danger of their coming collectively, or dwelling collectively once more.
The High Court has to have believed that there is no desirable manner where in the parties can be pressured to renew existence with the consort, not anything is gained through looking to keep the events tied all the time to a wedding that in fact has ceased to exist. Undoubtedly, it’s miles the duty of the Court and all involved that the marriage status should, as a ways as feasible, as long as viable and each time viable, be maintained, but whilst the marriage is completely dead, in that event, nothing is won by means of seeking to hold the parties tied all the time to a wedding which in truth has ceased to exist. In the immediately case, there has been total disappearance of emotional substratum within the marriage. The direction which has been adopted with the aid of the High Court would encourage non-stop bickering, perpetual bitterness and may lead to immorality. In view of the fact that the parties have been dwelling one by one for more than 10 years and criminal and civil lawsuits were initiated by the respondent in opposition to the appellant and some proceedings had been initiated by the appellant against the respondent, the matrimonial bond among the events is past restore.
A marriage among the parties is most effective in name. The marriage has been wrecked beyond the hope of salvage, public interest and interest of all involved lies inside the popularity of the fact and to claim defunct de jure what’s already defunct de facto. To keep the sham is glaringly conducive to immorality and potentially more prejudicial to the general public interest than a dissolution of the wedding bond. The High Court have to have visualized that renovation of such a wedding is definitely unworkable which has ceased to be effective and might be extra supply of distress for the events. The High Court need to have taken into consideration that a human trouble can be properly resolved through adopting a human technique. In the immediate case, no longer to supply a decree of divorce could be disastrous for the parties. Otherwise, there can be a ray of desire for the parties that once a passage of time (after acquiring a decree of divorce) the events may additionally psychologically and emotionally relax and begin a brand new bankruptcy in lifestyles. In our taken into consideration view, trying to the bizarre information of the case, the High Court was not justified in setting apart the order of the Trial Court.
“In our opinion, information lies in accepting the pragmatic reality of lifestyles and take a decision which might ultimately be conducive inside the hobby of both the events. Consequently, we set apart the impugned judgment of the High Court and direct that the wedding among the events should be dissolved in keeping with the provisions of the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955. In the extraordinary facts and instances of the case, to remedy the hassle inside the interest of all involved, even as dissolving the marriage among the parties, we direct the appellant to pay Rs. 25,00,000/- (Rupees Twenty five lacs) to the respondent in the direction of everlasting protection to be paid within eight weeks. This quantity could encompass Rs. 5,00,000/- (Rupees five lacs with interest) deposited by the appellant on the route of the Trial Court. The respondent would feel free to withdraw this quantity with hobby. Therefore, now the appellant might pay best Rs. 20,00,000/- (Rupees Twenty lacs) to the respondent inside the stipulated duration. In case the appellant fails to pay the quantity as indicated above in the stipulated length, the route given with the aid of us would be of no avail and the attraction shall stand disregarded.”
“In awarding permanent renovation we got considered the financial standing of the appellant. Before we element with this situation, at the consideration of the totality of facts, this Court would love to propose the Union of India to noticeably remember bringing an change within the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 to incorporate irretrievable breakdown of marriage as a floor for the grant of divorce. A copy of the judgment sent to the Secretary, Ministry of Law & Justice, Department of Legal Affairs, Government of India for taking appropriate steps. Appeal is as a consequence disposed of the records and instances of the case; we direct the parties to bear their very own charges.”
According to my point of view after looking the facts of the case both the parties have levelled allegations of character assassination against each other but they failed to prove those allegations as the respondent states that the appellant was staying with Shivangi and as appellant states that she was in agreement position with Biswas rout but they both failed to prove the statements given by them. Even as per the high court the evaluations of evidence were not done correctly by the trial court because high court found that the appellant was living with Shivangi and as the appellant deposited a sum of Rs. 5,00,000 which shows that he was not to be called as a financially weak person. As also it was seen that both of the parties were staying separately since 10 years and even the appellant was mentally and physically tortured by the respondent which shows that the appellant was treated with cruelty.
Cruelty is the act by which a party suffers mental or physical pain. Also according to the section 13(1)(a) of the Hindu Marriage Act a marriage should be dissolved on the ground that the other party has done the act which has caused the mental or physical pain which has been seen in this case as it was the respondent who caused the mental and physical harm to the appellant which clearly stated that there is no possibility of them living together, so the court found that it was impossible for both the parties staying together and continue their married life after there were several allegations made against each other and further decided to dissolve their marriage according to Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 thus the Court recommended the Union of India to seriously consider bringing an amendment in the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 to incorporate irretrievable breakdown of marriage as a ground for the grant of divorce which in my point of view is the correct step taken by the court for the dissolution of the marriage between both the parties.
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