At, High Court of Chattisgarh
By, THE HONOURABLE MR. JUSTICE I.M. QUDDUSI & THE HONOURABLE MR. JUSTICE PRASHANT KUMAR MISHRA
For the Petitioner: Sanjay Patel, counsel. For the Respondent: Avinash Mishra, counsel.
(First Appeal under Section 19 of the Family Courts Act)
I.M. QUDDUSI, J.
2. This appeal under Section 19(1) of the Family Courts Act, 1984 (henceforth `the Act, 1984') has been preferred by the appellant/wife challenging the judgment and decree dated 29-9-2005 passed by the 1st Additional Principal Judge, Family Court, Durg allowing the respondent/husband's application under Section 13 of the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 (henceforth `the Act, 1955') and granting a decree of divorce.
3. Facts of the case, briefly stated, are that the respondent/husband/applicant before the Court below instituted an application under Section 13 of the Act, 1955 on the pleadings inter alia that the parties were married at Durg on 24-4-1992. The applicant is a fourth clas
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railway employee, whereas the appellant/non-applicant's brother was posted as Deputy Chief Controller in the same railway at the relevant time. At the instance of the non-applicant's brother, he agreed to marry the non-applicant and they started residing together. However, after sometime, the applicant realised that the non-applicant is a quarrelsome and irritating lady and used to make quarrel with him for no good reasons. She was in the habit of not taking care of the husband and not cooking food, therefore, at times, she had to attend office without having meals and if the husband tried to convince her, she used to shout, create a scene and collect the neighbours. In spite of efforts made by the brother to prevail upon the wife, she did not mend her ways.4. It was further stated in the application that she was having illicit relation with one R.M.Yewalkar and the wife of said R.M.Yewalkar used to address the non- applicant as her Saut (another wife of her husband). The non-applicant always insisted to buy Colour TV, Fridge, Scooter, Cooler, Water Cooler etc., which the applicant could not afford from his meager salary and because of this the non-applicant used to embarrass him in front of friends and relatives. She had no respect for his friends and relatives and never used to treat them properly by offering tea or breakfast whenever they used to visit his house. Though they had two issues from the marriage, but more oftenly she refused to have physical relation and was making false allegations that he has a keep at Village Puraina. She also used to quarrel with the applicant by asking him not to have relation with his parents. The situation went to this extent that he had to proceed on pilgrimage for two months from 9-3-2003 and during this time the non-applicant lodged a report of missing person in the police station. When he came back and attended the police station, he was beaten by non- applicant's sister-in-law (Bhabhi) K. Padma and one policeman. At that time, the non-applicant was also present and was deriving pleasure when the applicant was thrashed by the police and the said K. Padma. The applicant was dragged to the house of Dattu Fitter and from there he was taken to one STD-PCO and was asked to call his parents. The applicant lodged a report with the police on the next day. He also reported the matter against K. Padma to the higher officers. Knowing this, the non-applicant locked the house and went to Raipur and lodged a false report of demand of dowry against the applicant and his parents. Because of compelling circumstances, the applicant agreed to take his wife to his house. However, after few days, she came back to her original form and again lodged a report on 17-6-2003.5. The appellant/wife/non-applicant before the Court below, in her reply, denied the allegations and stated that the applicant is habitual drinker. She denied to have any relation with R.M.Yewalkar. It was stated by her that she was treated with cruelty and for this she had to lodge a report. However, on assurance of good behaviour, she went to her marital house, but she was treated with cruelty once again.6. In course of trial, the applicant examined himself as AW-1 and his father V.S.N. Moorty as AW-2. He also examined one S.S. Ishtiyak as AW-3, Panchram Gupta as AW-4, Bramhadin Pandey as AW-5 and Matru Lasal Chakravarty as AW-6. On the other hand, the non- applicant/wife examined herself as NAW-1, her brother K. Ramanna Rao as NAW-2 and M. Ramchandra as NAW-3. 7. On the basis of evidence available on record, the family Court concluded that the husband has been able to establish ground under Section 13(1)(ib) of the Act, 1955 and has granted the decree of divorce on the ground of cruelty.8. Learned counsel for the appellant has argued that from the evidence on record ground under Section 13(1)(ib) of the Act, 1955 is not established and the impugned decree has wrongly been passed on perverse findings.9. Learned counsel for the respondent has supported the impugned decree and has prayed that the appeal be dismissed.10. This Court has heard learned counsel for the parties at length and perused the record. AW-3 S.S. Ishtiyak, aged about 58 years, a retired railway employee, has stated that he had witnessed the incident when the applicant was beaten by one policeman and a woman. Similarly, AW-4 Panchram Gupta, aged about 61 years, a co-employee of the applicant in railways, has also stated that he had seen K. Padma and one Abhay Ganodkar were beating the applicant in the police station. He has also stated that the non-applicant used to treat the applicant with cruelty. AW-5 Bramhadin Pandey is the head constable in G.R.P. Outpost Charoda, who appeared in the witness-box along with the record of the complaint lodged by the applicant Ranga Moorty. This witness has deposed that during investigation wife Annapurna admitted that she caught hold of her husband's hand whereon he fell down and sustained injuries. AW-6 Matru Lasal Chakravarty has stated that one day the applicant came to the police station and stated that his wife has snatched all the money from him and he has no funds for going to Durg and he had given Rs.20/- to him on humanitarian grounds.11. NAW-2 K. Ramanna Rao, the brother of the non- applicant, has admitted that there were serious disputes between the husband and the wife. NAW-3 M. Ramchandra, who is neighbour of the non-applicant and her brother, has deposed that the applicant always used to complain about the behaviour of the non-applicant and the husband and wife used to quarrel frequently.12. After appreciating the evidence elaborately, the family Court has recorded the findings in paragraphs 15, 16 and 17 of the impugned judgment that the facts of beating the applicant in the police station and serious disputes/quarrel between them have been fully established. On the basis of facts and evidence and applying the principle of preponderance of probabilities, the family Court has concluded that the applicant was treated with cruelty by the non- applicant/wife and it is not possible for both of them to live together.13. After going through the entire evidence, this Court is of the opinion that the finding recorded by the family Court regarding commission of cruelty by the non-applicant/wife is born out from the evidence and the said finding is not perverse, therefore, the instant appeal has no substance and it deserves to be dismissed.14. Learned counsel for the appellant has submitted that the appellant/wife deserves permanent alimony/maintenance under Section 25 of the Act, 1955. However, there is no material about the income of the respondent/husband and the fact as to whether the appellant/wife is able to maintain herself or not. No prayer in this regard appears to have been made before the family Court also, therefore, it is not possible at this stage to pass any order under Section 25 of the Act, 1955. However, the appellant/wife shall be at liberty to move a duly constituted application under Section 25 of the Act, 1955 before the Court below and in such eventuality, the same shall be disposed of on its own merits. The first appeal is, thus, dismissed. There shall be no order as to costs.15. A decree be drawn-up accordingly.