Can an unemployed husband escape from his responsibility to maintain wife? Tis Hazari Court answers

Tis Hazari Court, Delhi: Sanjay Sharma-II, ASJ-03, termination of service does not mean that husband is incapable of finding another employment and the said would not absolve him from his responsibility to maintain the wife.

Criminal Appeal under Section 29 of the Protection of Women from Domestic Act, 2005 was directed against the order, in complaint case, whereby trial court directed the appellant to pay interim maintenance of Rs 5,133 per month to the respondent from the date of filing of present petition till its final disposal.

Factual Matrix

The complainant filed an application under Section 12 of the Act against the appellant and his family members alongwith an application under Section 23 of the Act for interim maintenance on the averments that complainant was married with the appellant.

Complainant alleged that she was subjected to physical and mental cruelty for bringing insufficient dowry. In October, 2013, the complainant left the shared household.

Further, the complainant’s case was that the appellant was earning more than Rs 50,000 per month and the appellant was living a luxurious life. The complainant is now residing with her parents.

Analysis and Discussion

“It is trite to state that it is the moral and legal obligation of the appellant to maintain his wife and provide her same comforts commensurate to his status and standard of living.” 

As per the affidavit of assets, income and expenditure filed by the appellant it was clear that the appellant was a graduate ad an experienced photographer.

The fact that the appellant was unemployed would not absolve him from his responsibility to maintain the complainant.

Further, the Court observed that, Termination of service does not mean that the appellant is incapable of finding another employment or work.

In the above mentioned affidavit, the appellant stated that his expenses were around Rs 5,600 per month and he had shown his mother as his dependent, though he did not explain the source of his income.

The appellant is a graduate. He is able-bodied and experienced photographer. He is residing in an ancestral home in a posh colony of Delhi. He is not suffering from any physical disability preventing him from doing any work. He cannot shrink his responsibility regarding interim maintenance towards the complainant by pleading unemployment, Court expressed.

Conclusion

The Bench found no reason to interfere with the impugned order awarding a meagre amount to interim maintenance of Rs 5,133 per month to the wife.[Pawan Deep Singh v. Jaspreet Kaur, Criminal Appeal No. 107 of 2021, decided on 5-2-2022]


Advocates before the Court:

Mr. Rajesh Bhatia, Advocate with the appellant.

Ms. Monika Sharma, Advocate with the respondent.

Join the discussion

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.