Delhi High Court: Subramonium Prasad, J., refused to grant relief to the petitioner against orders of the lower court restraining him from dispossessing the respondent from the subject property and also directing him to pay monthly maintenance to her.
Respondent had filed an application under Section 12 of the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005. It was stated that the respondent met petitioner in the year 2009 when she was already married. In the year 2014 after obtaining divorce, the respondent got married to the petitioner.
It is further stated that the petitioner in order to induce respondent to marry him did not disclose his marital status to her. Though petitioner executed a Marriage Agreement to how his genuineness and responsibility towards the respondent and her child from a prior marriage.
Respondent was subjected to physical and mental abuse by the petitioner. Hence, respondent had filed an FIR against the petitioner. Respondent also sought a restraining order from being evicted from the rented accommodation.
Analysis, Law and Decision
High Court expressed that DV Act is meant to provide for the rights of women to secure housing. The Act also provides for the right of a woman to reside in her matrimonial home or shared household, whether or not she has any title or rights in such home or household.
What does the aggrieved have to show?
Aggrieved person has to show that the aggrieved person and the respondent (man) lived together in a shared household.
Marriage Deed was filed which recorded that after the marriage parties will reside together as husband and wife and will be faithful towards each other. There were photographs of the petitioner and respondent that gave the impression that the parties were living together as husband and wife and had married each other.
As per the school record of the child, petitioner was the father of the child. Copies of the bank accounts were filed wherein the petitioner has been shown as a nominee of the account held by the respondent.
High Court noted that the couple held themselves out in the society as being akin to spouses which fact was evident from marriage-cum-agreement deed, affidavits, the school records of the child and the bank statements of the respondent.
In the present matter, respondent was told that the wife of the petitioner was on dialysis and that she would die soon.
Petitioners’ contention was that he had not entered into any rental agreement and the agreements, affidavits and the photographs produced by the respondent were not genuine.
Bigamous and Adulterous Relationship?
Bench expressed that question as to whether the respondent herein has been duped by the petitioner or whether she was a party to an adulterous and bigamous relationship or not and whether her conduct would not entitle her to any protection under the DV Act can be determined only after the evidence is led.
Metropolitan Magistrate, after the evidence led, had concluded that the respondent was not entitled to the protection of the DV Act and hence shall return the respondent the amount received by her as interim maintenance.
High Court held that the matter be heard by the trial court and should be decided finally within a period of 1 year. [Parveen Tandon v. Tanika Tandon, 2021 SCC OnLine Del 3044, decided on 7-06-2021]
Advocates before the Court:
For the Petitioner: Utkarsh and Anshu Priyanka, Advocates.
For the Respondent: Kamal Anand, Advocate