At, High Court of Punjab and Haryana
By, THE HONOURABLE MR. JUSTICE M.M. KUMAR
For the Petitioner: Rajiv Kataria, Advocate. For the Respondent: M.S. Gulani, Advocate.
M.M. Kumar, J.
1. This petition filed under Section 24 of the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 prays for transfer of the divorce petition filed by the respondent-husband against the petitioner-wife pending in the Court of Additional District Judge, Chandigarh to a Court of competent jurisdiction at Jalandhar. The principal ground pleaded by the petitioner-wife is that she has initiated proceedings against the respondent-husband under Sections 406/498A/120, IPC and the trial is going on in the Court at Jalandhar. She has further averred that the respondent-husband has tried to threaten and terrorise her by physical maltreatment with the help of some gunda elements and she would be disfigured. Therefore, it has become impossible for her to attend the hearing at Chandigarh.
2. The respondent-husband in his reply has stoutly opposed the assertions made by the petitioner-wife and has alleged that it is only a ploy to delay the divorce proceedings which are at final stage and the case is fixed for 6.6.2003 for arguments. The respondent-husabnd has produced in his reply various interlocutory orders of the learned Additional District Judge from the date of appearance in March, 1998 and thereafter to show that the conduct of the petitioner-wife is not credible. According to the learned Counsel a perusal of those orders would show that she has to be proceeded ex parte on 10.1.2001, 18.3.2003 and 22.5.2003. The learned Counsel has also pointed out that in any case the posting of the respondent-husband in the sensitive defence area does not permit him to attend the Court often. Referring to the averments made in paragraph 4 of the reply, the learned Counsel has urged that the respondent-husband attended the hearing on the date of reconciliation, then on 21.12.2000, 23.5.2002 and 7.8.2002 when his statement was recorded and he concluded his evidence. The learned Counsel has further submitted that from January 2000 to January 2002 he remained posted at China Border in Himachal Pradesh from February 2002 to December 2002, he was posted at Rajasthan Border fighting with the army of Pakistan in operation ‘Parakarm’ and from January 2003 he is posted at Bangalore. Therefore, it is impossible for the respondent-husband to attend the Court or give any threat to the petitoner-wife. The allegations according to the learned Counsel are absolutely false.
3. It is true that in such like cases convenience of the wife has to be taken into consideration and ordinarily the request of the wife is accepted as has been laid down in the case of Neelam Kanwarv. Devinder Singh Kanwar, 2004 (4) AIJ 129 and Sumita Singh v. Kumar Sanjay and Another, I (2001) DMC 591 (SC)=III (2001) SLT 33=AIR 2002 SC 396. But it is equally true that once the case has progressed to the stage of arguments or near the stage of arguments then nothing remains to be done as is the situation prevailing in the instant case. There is no rule of law that in every case transfer petition be allowed in favour of the wife. In the instant case, the allegations of threats or terrorising the petitioner-wife do not inspire confidence because the respondent-husband who is an army man has hardly come personally to attend the hearings as is evident from his statement and in paragraph 4 of the reply. The allegations with regard to issuance of threats are vague as no date or place has been indicated in the petition filed by the petitioner-wife. Therefore, I do not feel persuaded to take the view that the convenience of the petitioner-wife is involved in transferring the petition to a Court of competent jurisdiction
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at Jalandhar, especially when she has been comfortably and conveniently attending the hearings since 1999. It appears to me that effort on the part of the petitioner-wife is to cause delay in the decision of the divorce petition filed under Section 13 of the Act. Therefore, the petition is liable to be dismissed. For the foregoing reasons, this petition fails and the same is dismissed.