Delhi HC PWDVA – No Domestic relationship of Bahu if she, husband live separate from his parents
A woman cannot book her in-laws under the Domestic Violence Act if she, along with her husband, had stayed abroad at the time of matrimonial dispute, the Delhi High Court held.
“There can be no domestic relationship of the wife of the son with the parents when the parents are not living along with the son and there can be no domestic relationship of a wife with the parents of her husband when the son, along with the wife, is living abroad, maintaining a family there and children are born abroad…,” said Justice Shiv Narayan Dhingra.
“In order to constitute a family and domestic relationship, it is necessary that the persons who constitute domestic relationship must be living together in the same house under one head. If they are living separately, then they are not a family but they are relatives related by blood or consanguinity to each other…,” said Justice Dhingra in a judgement.
“Once a son grows up and he starts earning, marries, makes his separate home and sires (fathers) children, the burden of his wife cannot be put on to the shoulders of his father or brother on an estrangement between husband and wife….” the court said.
The Court also pulled up a family court judge for directing the in-laws, who stay in India, to pay jointly Rs 50,000 towards the monthly maintenance to their daughter-in -law, Payal Malik.
“I am surprised that the court below did not give weight to the judgment of New Jersy, USA, court where parties lived for seven and half years but assumed jurisdiction under the Domestic Violence(DV) Act because of the pure temporary residence of the wife in Delhi who is otherwise a resident of Hissar…,” said the court and set aside the lower court’s July 27, 2009, order to pay maintenance to the woman.
The Court’s ruling came on an appeal filed by Harbans Lal Malik, father-in-law, Neelam (mother-in-law) and Varun Malik, brother-in-law besides Nagesh Malik, the husband, challenging the lower court’s order.