Kerala High Court: In a case filed seeking the release of maintenance amount as in the instant set of facts when the respondent filed a petition before the Family Court to get the amount released, the same was objected to by the revision petitioner, A Badharudeen, J., directed all Family Court Judges to release the amount deposited towards arrears of maintenance under the orders of the Court or otherwise to the claimants at the earliest.
The Court noted that that when arrears of maintenance being deposited before the Family Courts in obedience to the order/interim order or otherwise, Family Courts are reluctant to release the amount deposited to the claimants and unwantedly insist for orders from this Court to release the amount.
The Court remarked that it appears to be a bad practice which is detrimental to the interest of the claimants. In fact, it is the duty of the Family Courts to release the amount deposited within no time to the respondents, to help them survive.
Thus, the Court directed the Family Court to release the amount deposited in this case, within three days of receipt of the copy of this order, without fail, and report compliance.
Thus, the Court concluded that that when amounts are deposited, being part of arrears of maintenance, the Family Court shall immediately secure the presence of the claimant/claimants, after contacting them through their lawyers or in the telephone numbers of the claimants, and shall release the amount directly to the parties, without effecting deposit of the same in the treasury.
However, the Court opined that if any amount is deposited towards arrears of maintenance, with the rider not to release the amount, such amount alone shall not be released in view of this direction.
[Manikandan v. Raveena, R P (FC) No. 302 of 2022, decided on 01-12-2022]
Advocates who appeared in this case :
Ms. Gouri Meempat, Ms. Deepa Narayanan, K Sujai Sathian and Sangeetha Sreekumar, Advocates for the Petitoner;
Mr. K.R. Vinod and M.S. Letha, Advocates for the Respondent.
*Arunima Bose, Editorial Assistant has reported this brief.