Monthly Archives: June 2015

Grant of Maintenance – Principles of

It can never be forgotten that the inherent and fundamental principle behind Section 125 CrPC is for amelioration of the financial state of affairs as well as mental agony and anguish that a woman suffers when she is compelled to leave her matrimonial home. The statute commands that there have to be some acceptable arrangements so that she can sustain herself. The principle of sustenance gets more heightened when the children are with her. Be it clarified that sustenance does not mean and can never allow to mean a mere survival. A woman, who is constrained to leave the matrimonial home, should not be allowed to feel that she has fallen from grace and move hither and thither arranging for sustenance. As per law, she is entitled to lead a life in the similar manner as she would have lived in the house of her husband. And that is where the status and strata of the husband comes into play and that is where the legal obligation of the husband becomes a prominent one. As long as the wife is held entitled to grant of maintenance within the parameters of Section 125 CrPC, it has to be adequate so that she can live with dignity as she would have lived in her matrimonial home. She cannot be compelled to become a destitute or a beggar. There can be no shadow of doubt that an order under Section 125 CrPC can be passed if a person despite having sufficient means neglects or refuses to maintain the wife. Sometimes, a plea is advanced by the husband that he does not have the means to pay, or he does not have a job or his business is not doing well. These are only bald excuses and, in fact, they have no acceptability in law. If the husband is healthy, able bodied and is in a position to support himself, he is under the legal obligation to support his wife, for wife’s right to receive maintenance under Section 125 CrPC, unless disqualified, is an absolute right. Shamma Farooqui v. Shahid Khan, (2015) 5 SCC 705.

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Filed under Grant of Maintenance, Matrimonial Dispute

Reasonable Compensation – Liquidated Amount

Where a sum is named in a contract as a liquidated amount payable by way of damages, the party complaining of a breach can receive as reasonable compensation such liquidated amount only if it is a genuine pre-estimate of damages fixed by both parties and found to be such by the court. In other cases, where a sum is named in a contract as a liquidated amount payable by way of damages, only reasonable compensation can be awarded not exceeding the amount so stated. Similarly, in cases where the amount fixed is in the nature of penalty, only reasonable compensation can be awarded not exceeding the penalty so stated. In both cases, the liquidated amount or penalty is the upper limit beyond which the court cannot grant reasonable compensation. Kailash Nath Associates v. D.D.A., (2015) 4 SCC 136.

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Filed under Contract Law, Liquidated Amount

Matrimonial Dispute – Interim Orders

As has been held in Arathi Bandi v. Bandi Jagadrashaka Rao, (2013) 15 SCC 790, a violation of interim or an interlocutory order passed by a court of competent jurisdiction ought to be viewed strictly if the rule of law is to be maintained. No litigant can be permitted to defy or decline adherence to an interim or an interlocutory order of a court merely because he or she is of the opinion that that order is incorrect, that has to be judged by a superior court or by another court having jurisdiction to do so. It is in this context that the observations of the Court in Sarita Sharma v. Sushil Sharma, (2000) 3 SCC 14 and Ruchi Majoo v. Sanjeev Majoo, (2011) 6 SCC 479 have to be appreciated. If a general principle, the violation of an interim or an interlocutory order is not viewed seriously, it will have widespread deleterious effects on the authority of courts to implement their interim or interlocutory orders or compel their adherence. It is common knowledge that in cases of matrimonial differences in our country, quite often more than one family court has jurisdiction over the subject matter in issue. In such a situation, can a litigant say that he or she will obey the interim or interlocutory order of a Family court and not that of another? Similarly, can one Family Court hold that an interim or an interlocutory order of another Family Court on the same subject matter may be ignored in the best interests and welfare of the child?. An interim or an interlocutory order is precisely what is, interim or interlocutory, and is always subject to modification or vacation by the court that passes that interim or interlocutory order. There is no finality attached to an interim or an interlocutory order. Surya Vadanan v. State of Tamil Nadu, (2015) 5 SCC 450.

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