Can constant allegations of extra-marital affair against your husband, be termed as cruelty? The Madras High Court in its judgement dated July 5, 2022 has granted divorce to a man on grounds of mental cruelty, observing that his wife constantly suspected his character and tarnished his image at work and in society.
The family court had earlier rejected to grant divorce to the husband.
READ ORDER | Wife Caused Enough Cruelty To Husband Even After His Acquittal In False Cases Filed By Her: Punjab & Haryana High Court
Couple got married in November 2008. At the time of marriage, appellant/husband was working as a Lecturer in Vivekanandha Medical College and the respondent/wife was working as a Teacher in Government School.
The duo lived together for 2 and 1/2 years in the husband’s parental home, where they gave birth to their daughter.
According to appellant, the respondent/wife developed suspicion about his conduct and character, and humiliated him by connecting him with his female colleagues. A false complaint was registered by respondent/wife against appellant/husband before Thiruchengodu All Women Police Station. However, on advice of the police, the couple set up their nuclear home, on the 1st floor of husband’s parents’ house.
Wife Harassed Husband By Visiting His Office, Separated Since 2011
The appellant/husband, in his petition stated, that his wife, with an evil intention of tarnishing his image, would visit his work place (college), pass ill comments against him, by connecting him with other female lecturers.
Even after setting up separate home, the wife continued to make unreasonable demands and subsequently, left her husband’s home without any reasonable justification.
According to the husband, the parties have been living separately since January 2011. The appellant also submitted that all his attempts for reunion resulted in failure and hence he was constrained to file the above petition for divorce on the ground of cruelty.
READ JUDGEMENT | Mental Cruelty To Husband If Wife Refuses Divorce Even After 21-Years Of Separation; Karnataka HC Dissolves Marriage With Rs 30 Lakh Alimony
The respondent wife in her defence stated that her husband was having illicit affairs with other working women and he used to talk with them on mobile till mid night. According to the respondent, the petitions filed by her before police were only for reunion and she wanted to live with the appellant, keeping in mind the welfare of their daughter.
She also expressed her willingness to work as dutiful wife of the appellant and also give respect to the elders of the appellant’s family. On these pleadings she sought for the dismissal of the divorce petition.
In June 2016, a Family Court in Erode denied husband a decree of divorce on the ground of cruelty.
Madras High Court
The Madras High Court went through the submissions and observed that suspecting the character of the husband, visiting his office and creating a scene and then filing a complaint against him without submitting any evidence would amount to mental cruelty.
A division bench of Justices V M Velumani and S Sounthar, while granting divorce to a husband observed how his wife used filthy language and linked him to other female teaching staff working, in the presence of students and other colleagues in the college. The Bench noted,
We can safely infer that the wife visited the college in which the husband was working and she created a scene there by linking him with female teaching staff in the presence of other staff members and students. Certainly this act of the wife would amount to mental cruelty within the meaning of Section 13(1)(ia) of Hindu Marriage Act.
We can also add that this act would certainly cause serious, irreparable injury to the image of the husband in the minds of his colleagues and students.
Wife threatening to commit suicide is cruelty to husband: Madras HC
Wife Removed Thali Chain (Mangalsutra)
During the hearing, the husband pointed out that the wife while leaving his company in 2011, had removed her thali chain (Mangalsutra), which is a sacred chain worn by a woman as a token of being married.
However, the wife explained that she had only removed that chain and had retained the thali. She submitted that tying thali chain is not necessary and removing it would also not have any impact on the marital life of a couple.
The judges, however, opined that the act of removing thali chain had its own significance and it showed that the parties had no intention to continue the marital relationship. The Bench held,
It is a matter of common knowledge that tying of thali is an essential ritual in marriage ceremony that takes place in this part of the world. The removal of thali chain is often treated as an unceremonious act.
We don’t say for a moment that removal of thali chain per se sufficient to put an end to the marital knot, but the said act of the wife is a piece of evidence in drawing an inference about the intentions of the parties.
The act of the wife in removal of thali chain at the time of separation coupled with various other evidences available on record, compel us to come to a definite conclusion that the parties have no intention to reconcile and continue the marital knot.
While allowing the appeal and granting divorce to the husband, the Madras High Court said,
…hence in the facts and circumstances of the case and also in view of our finding that the respondent/wife by her act caused mental cruelty to the husband, we propose to put a full stop to the marital tie by granting decree dissolving the marriage between the petitioner and the respondent.
READ JUDGEMENT | Wife’s Refusal To Consummate Marriage Is Mental Cruelty; Madras HC Grants Divorce To Husband After 15-Years Of Separation
- Its time India introduced Irretrievable Breakdown in Marriage as grounds for divorce, so that precious time of courts are not wasted in frivolous ego battles
- If either parties do not consent to divorce, after 2-3 years of separation, the other party must be granted divorce by default – alimony must be strictly decided keeping in mind income of wife, duration in marriage. Welfare of children must not be clubbed with wives and shared parenting must become a norm
- On an average, couples spend a minimum decade battling divorce cases, since one of the spouses (mostly, the wives) refuse to consent to mutual divorce, despite being living separately for years
- Husband, in this case, has finally got his legal freedom after running around for 11-years at court
- In the interim, he has lost out on his prime years, where both parties could have restarted their lives again
- This is not about Men’s Rights, this is attacking basic human right, by empowering one gender to allow curtail, mental, physical and emotional happiness of other spouse, only to bloat their inflated egos
READ JUDGEMENT | Suspecting Character Of Husband, Visiting His Office & Linking Him With Female Colleagues Is Mental Cruelty: Madras HC— Voice For Men India (@voiceformenind) July 12, 2022
▪️2011: Wife leaves matrimonial home
▪️2016: Family Court rejects Divorce
▪️2022: HC grants Divorcehttps://t.co/2IX89ZYHHJ
Parsi Boy Shares His Story Of Alleged Betrayal By Wife, False Cases & Divorce Jury System
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