HC grants divorce; says blaming spouse for failure to conceive is cruelty

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The Bombay High Court has granted divorce to a 62-year-old man, observing that constantly blaming one’s spouse for failure to conceive amounts to cruelty.

A division bench of Justices K K Tated and S K Kotwal allowed the man’s petition challenging a May 2010 order of the family court refusing his divorce plea which he had filed in 1995.

The man, in his plea before the lower court and the HC, alleged that his 56-year-old wife was never cordial with him and had filed several complaints against him in the past without proper evidence, which amounted to cruelty.

The senior citizen also claimed that his wife blamed him for not being able to conceive.

The couple got married in 1972 but started living separately in 1993 after constant fights and discord.

The high court, after hearing arguments from lawyers of both the man and his wife, observed that the appellant (husband) had made out sufficient case for grant of divorce on the ground of cruelty.

“The cross examination of the respondent wife (before the family court) shows that she was blaming the appellant for her not being to conceive, which also amounts to cruelty meted out to the appellant,” the HC said in its order on January 12.

“We are of the opinion that because of the unreasonable criminal proceedings initiated by or at the instance of the respondent, the appellant had suffered tremendous mental agony and it was not possible for him to cohabit with the respondent,” the judges said.

The court, however, directed the husband to continue paying a monthly maintenance to his wife and also not raise any dispute regarding the flat occupied by her.