Rain or sunshine, a husband is expected to fulfil every duty of a provider as per any matrimonial laws defined by the courts of India. However, in a reverse case, Gujarat High Court has quashed a family court’s order which instructed the wife to return from London and fulfil her matrimonial duties.
- The couple hails from Madhapar town near Bhuj in Gujarat
- They got married in the year 2009
- After living with the husband briefly, the woman left for London and gave birth to their daughter
- The daughter is currently studying at a school in the Kingsbury area of UK
- The husband too decided to accompany his wife after a while
- However, following an acrimonious relationship, he returned to India
- In 2015, the wife filed a domestic violence case against her husband and in-laws
- In 2016, the woman also filed for divorce in the family court of Bhuj, however, herself withdrew the same in 2017
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- The man on the other hand approached court for restitution of conjugal rights under provisions of Section 9 of the Hindu Marriage Act, accusing his wife of wilful desertion
- The family court accepted husband’s plea that he could not afford to live in the UK, and thus his wife too should not live in London and must join him back in Gujarat
- The Gujarat High Court, however, found the family court order without any basis and quashed the same
High Court Observed Husband’s Behaviour
In 2019, husband filed an application for his wife to return to India and live with him. The man waited for her to return, however, when the woman failed to do so, he filed an application of divorce in a UK court January 2020.
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According to the High Court, the husband cannot file divorce on one hand and expect the wife to return and fulfil her conjugal duties on the other hand. Thus, the high court accepted the wife’s appeal against the family court order. The court also noted,
Just because ‘a woman left her matrimonial home and chose to live in UK (on grounds of alleged domestic violence) with her daughter, does not necessarily establish that she has withdrawn from her husband’s society.
- Marriage defined silently by our Indian laws – All responsibilities and duties belong to the husband, while a woman has absolute right to decide the best for herself without being burdened by any ‘matrimonial duty’
- If a woman is expected to equally partner in the alliance, the same becomes ‘domestic violence’ and torture on a woman who is not allowed to be allegedly liberated
- Let’s analyse the case above – The couple got married in 2009 and the woman immediately moved out of her matrimonial home and shifted base to London
- A woman who never resided with her in-laws files domestic violence charges on them after a gap of six years
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- The wife can unilaterally decide after marriage, wherever she wants to live and a husband is expected to follow her
- However, the reverse becomes a perfect ground for mental and physical harassment of wives
- When it comes to child custody, once again the wife chooses to decide how she will solely retain the custody of the daughter and the man is a mere puppet
- The biological father hardly has any say, and is reduced to a sperm donor who is expected to foot bills for the rest of his life
- As per the current status, wife withdrew her divorce application herself, which means she chooses neither to co-habit with the man, nor set him legally free
- To top it all, some of our courts encourage these one-sided arrangements that are laid down only and only by women
- The man is left trapped in a series of cases which he would continue to fight until eternity
- One can only imagine, if a man chose to abruptly leave his wife and shift to UK after marriage and expected the woman to join him or live alone back in India
- In such a scenario, every single agency would have served him a red corner notice until his passport was seized and he was dragged back to India
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