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    Top 10 Judgement on Domestic Violence

    -Monika Pilania

    These are the Top 10 Judgements on Domestic Violence in India.

    1. Binita Dass V. Uttam Kumar

    (High Court Of Delhi) 

    Judgment Date: 09-08-2019

    FACTS OF THE CASE: Petitioner had filed an application under the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005 and along with the application had filed an interim application under Section 23 seeking interim maintenance. Said application has been rejected by the Trial Court by order dated 04.08.2015 solely on the ground that the petitioner and respondent are equally qualified and the petitioner was previously employed and has not disclosed any explanation or disability on her part so as to disable her to earn her living. The Appellate Court has also dismissed the appeal on the ground that the petitioner was earlier working in a private company and she has the capacity to work and with earnest efforts, she shall be able to search for a suitable job for herself.

    HELD: It has specifically been held that the capacity to earn and actually earning are two different things. It is not the matter of the respondent, that petitioner is actually employed or earning. The only fact taken is that she is qualified and capable of earning. Qualification of the wife and her capacity to earn cannot be a ground to deny interim maintenance to a wife who is dependent on someone and does not have any source of income. Trial Court is directed to pass an appropriate order assessing interim maintenance after taking into account the income of the respondent as well as his dependent family members within three months.

    • Haimanti Mal V. State Of West Bengal

    (High Court Of Judicature At Calcutta)

    Judgment Date: 09-07-2019

    FACTS OF THE CASE: Petitioner filed an application under Sections 18,19,20 and 22 of the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005 before the Court. Learned Magistrate allowed the said application on the contest in part directing the opposite party to pay Rs.4,000/- per month to the two minor children each as monetary relief and has also rejected the prayer of the wife of monetary relief. The opposite party was directed to pay Rs.4,000/- per month to the petitioner as rent for the accommodation of the petitioner and her children. The opposite party was directed to return all stridhan articles and to pay Rs.3,00,000/- to the petitioner as compensation. The opposite party preferred an appeal challenging the order passed by the Learned Magistrate. That appeal was allowed in part by the Learned Judge and the order passed by the Learned Magistrate was modified. The order of payment of compensation of Rs.3 Lakhs to the wife by the opposite party was set aside by the Learned Judge. the Learned Counsel who is appearing for the opposite party has submitted that the petitioner did not pray for compensation and the grant of compensation to the petitioner by the Learned Magistrate was not justified. In support of his contention, he has drawn the attention of the Court to Section 22 of the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005.

    HELD: Section 22 speaks about compensation and damages for the injuries, including mental torture and emotional distress, caused by the acts of domestic violence committed by the respondent. As such the opposite party’s husband is directed to pay compensation of Rs.1,00,000/-(Rupees One Lakh) to the petitioner for her mental pain and suffering.

    • Vikas Bhutani V. State & Anr.

    (high Court Of Delhi)

     Judgment Date: 17-05-2019

    FACTS OF THE CASE: On an application filed by the respondent under Section 12 of The Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005, an amount of Rs.40,000/- has been fixed as interim maintenance.  Learned counsel for the petitioner states that the Trial Court has made a mistake in not appreciating that the respondent had already filed an application under Section 125 Cr.P.C and interim maintenance of Rs.15,000/- was imposed in the said application and the petitioner had continued to pay the said amount of Rs.15,000/- per month.

    HELD: The object of the grant of maintenance is to afford a subsistence allowance to the wife, who is not able to maintain herself, then the award ordinally should be from the date of the application. For the court to award maintenance from the date of the order there have to be circumstances for the court to take such a view. Maintenance is awarded to her so that she can survive. The fact that some time is spent between the date of the application and a final adjudication and an award in favour of the wife, does not mean that she had enough money to maintain herself. When the trial court comes to the conclusion after a trial that the wife is entitled to an amount of maintenance the assessment in fact relates back to the date of the application. Accordingly, the petitioner shall pay maintenance at the price of Rs. 40,000/- per month from the date of filing of the application.

    • Megha Khandelwal V. Rajat Khandelwal & Ors.

    (Supreme Court Of India)

    Judgment Date: 10-05-2019

    FACTS OF THE CASE: This appeal takes exception to the order dated 12.04.2018 passed by the High Court of Judicature for Rajasthan whereby the application for entitlement of interim maintenance filed under Section 12 of The Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005 has been fixed of by awarding Rs.9,000 (Nine Thousand) per month as interim maintenance to be paid to the petitioner.

    HELD: The Supreme Court enhanced interim maintenance for the wife in a domestic violence case despite the fact that the wife was well educated. The Supreme court found it appropriate to enhance the interim maintenance to Rs. 25,000 per month to be paid to the petitioner.

    • Vjayanand Dattaram Naik V. Vishranti Vijayanand Naik (High Court Of Judicature At Bombay)

    Judgment Date: 13-02-2019

    FACTS OF THE CASE: The first respondent along with her minor son Vishwatta V. Naik had filed a domestic violence petition against the petitioner before the learned Judicial Magistrate. the learned Magistrate granted the application in terms of section 20 of the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005 (Act, for short) directing the petitioner to pay monthly maintenance of Rs. 5000/- to the first respondent for herself as well as of the child. The reliefs sought under sections 18, 19 and 22 of the Act were rejected. The first respondent feeling aggrieved by the same filed a Criminal Appeal before the Additional Sessions Judge, Mapusa. The Addl. Sessions Judge by a judgment and order has allowed the appeal by enhancing the maintenance to Rs. 7000/- p.m. from the date of the impugned order along with some other reliefs. Feeling aggrieved by this the petitioner is before the Court.

    HELD: The petition is allowed. The impugned orders are hereby set aside leaving it open to the first respondent to take expedient to any other remedy as may be available in law and if so advised. The petitioner shall still continue to pay maintenance at the price of Rs. 5000/- per month for a period of six months from today.

    • Lalita Toppo V. The State Of Jharkhand & Anr.

    (Supreme court of India)

     Judgment Date: 30-10-2018

    FACTS OF THE CASE: The appellant seeks maintenance under the provisions of the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005 (hereinafter referred to as “DVC Act, 2005”) even knowing that she is not the legally wedded wife and is not entitled to maintenance under Section 125 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973.

    HELD: In fact, under the provisions of the DVC Act, 2005 the victim i.e. unmarried wife or live-in-partner is entitled to more relief than what is contained under Section 125 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, namely, to a shared household. Also, It was also observed by the Court that domestic violence, according to the provisions of the Domestic Violence Act, also includes economic abuse.

    • Hiral P. Harsora vs Kusum Narottamdas Harsora And Ors

    (Supreme court of India)

    Judgment Date: 6 October 2016

    FACTS OF THE CASE:  Kusum Narottam Harsora and her mother Pushpa Narottam Harsora filed a complaint under the 2005 Act against Pradeep, the brother/son, his wife, and two sisters/daughters, alleging various acts of violence against them. The complaint was taken back to file a fresh complaint. For the next 3 years, nothing happened but again mother and daughter filed two separate complaints against the same respondents in October 2010. An application was moved before the Magistrate for the discharge of respondents Nos. 2 to 4 holding that the complaint was made under Section 2(a) read with Section 2(q) of the 2005 Act. It can only be made against an adult male person and the mentioned three respondents not being adult male persons were, therefore, needed to be discharged.

    HELD: the words “adult male” in Section 2(q) of the 2005 Act will stand deleted since these words do not square with Article 14 of the Constitution of India. Consequently, the proviso to Section 2(q) stands deleted. 

    • Manju Sharma vs Vipin

    (Delhi High Court)

    Judgment Date: 1 July 2019

    FACTS OF THE CASE: The petitioner filed the petition under the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act 2005. By the impugned order the trial court held that the respondent didn’t clearly disclose his income and assets and the declaration that he was earning only Rs. 12,000/- per month was unbelievable and accordingly prima facie evaluated his income at Rs. 30,000/- and awarded Rs. 10,000/- to the petitioner and her daughter. Petitioner dispute the said order and seeks enhancement of the maintenance to Rs. 40,000/- per month other than an order for residence.

    HELD: Delhi High Court has enhanced the maintenance to be given to the wife when it found that the husband was not disclosing his true income where his annual turnover apparently was Rs.1 crore. The interim maintenance of the petitioner was enhanced from Rs.10,000 per month to Rs. 30,000 per month. 

    • Smt Sadhana Vs Hemant

    (High court of Bombay)

    Judgement Date: 18th April 2019

    FACTS OF THE CASE: In this instant petition where the applicant was married to the respondent/husband, and out of the said wedlock two children’s born subsequently at the husband’s request, the family court issued a divorce order under Section 13 of the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 in 2008, the petitioner applied under the DV Act in 2009.

    HELD: Bombay High Court has held that if at the time of filing of the petition, the wife has already been divorced, there cannot be any domestic relationship and as such, the divorced wife cannot be entitled to protection under the Domestic Violence Act.

    1. Bhuwan Mohan Singh v. Meena

    (Supreme court of India)

    Judgement Date:

    FACTS OF THE CASE: The marriage between the appellant and the husband was solemnized as per Hindu rites and rituals, and in the wedlock, a son was born. The respondent, under certain circumstances, had to leave the marital home and thereafter filed an application under Section 125 of the Code claiming Rs.6000/- per month towards maintenance. The Family Court finally decided to award monthly maintenance of Rs.2500/- to the respondent-wife and Rs.1500/- to the second respondent-son. During the Family Court proceedings, a number of adjournments were granted. The learned Family Judge held that the respondent-wife was entitled to maintenance and, accordingly, fixed the award and directed that the maintenance be paid from the date of the order. Being dissatisfied with the aforesaid order the respondent-wife preferred the Criminal Revision Petition before the High Court of Judicature at Rajasthan.

    HELD: Section 125 of the Code of Criminal Procedure was conceived to ameliorate the agony, anguish, financial suffering of a woman who left her matrimonial home for the reasons handed in the provision so that some suitable arrangements can be made by the court and she can sustain herself and also her children if they’re with her. The conception of food doesn’t inescapably mean to lead the life of a beast, feel like an unperson to be thrown down from grace and bat for her introductory conservation nearly differently.

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