Patently false allegations have the effect of lowering husband’s reputation in the eyes of his peers.
Holding wife guilty of cruelty on her husband by filing false cases against him, Supreme Court granted husband divorce and directed him to give her a flat worth Rs 1 crore and Rs 50 lakh as one- time permanent alimony.
Apex court expounded that cruelty can never be defined “with exactitude” and what it is, will depend upon facts and circumstances of the each case.
Supreme Court further enunciated that,”It is apparent that wife made reckless, defamatory and false accusations against her husband, his family members and his colleagues, which would definitely have effect of lowering his reputation in the eyes of his peers”.
Apex Court further added that,”Mere filing of the complaints is not cruelty, if there are justifiable reasons to file complaints. Merely because no action is taken on complaint or after the trial accused is acquitted may not be a ground to treat such accusations of wife as cruelty within meaning of Hindu Marriage Act.
Apex Court Bench comprising of Justices Adarsh Kumar Goel and Deepak Gupta expounded that,”However, if it is found that allegations are patently false, then there can be no manner of doubt that said conduct of the spouse levelling false accusations against other spouse would be an act of cruelty”.
The couple had got married in the year 1989 according to Hindu rites and a son was born out of wedlock in 1990. They stayed together till 1999 but on March 19, 2000, husband left the matrimonial home and filed a plea for divorce.
After conducting investigation, Police found that not only complaint was false but also the injuries were self-inflicted by wife. The wife was booked for giving false information and the prosecution was launched.
The Bench stated that, “The petition for divorce filed by husband under Section 13 of the Act is decreed and the marriage of the parties solemnized on April 13, 1989 is dissolved by a decree of divorce. Wife shall be entitled to permanent alimony of Rs 50 lakh and a residential flat of the value of up to Rs 1 crore,”.
Apex Court expounded that though it has held that acts of wife in filing false complaints against husband amounts to cruelty, it is oblivious to requirements of wife to have a decent house where she can live.
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