IN THE HIGH COURT AT CALCUTTA
CIVIL REVISIONAL JURISDICTION
BEFORE: HON’BLE MR. JUSTICE HARISH TANDON
C.O. 790 OF 2017
SMT. JAYEETA MUKHERJEE (NEE BHATTACHARJEE)
Mr. Anindya Lahiri, Adv.
Mr. Indranil Mukherjee (In Person)
… for the Petitioner
Mr. Amarnath Agarwal, Adv.
…. For the Opposite Party.
Judgment on: 16th May, 2018.
This revisional application is directed against Order No. 14 dated 22nd
February, 2017 passed by the learned Additional District Judge, 1st Court,
Barasat in Misc. Case No. 220 of 2016 by which an application seeking
direction upon the opposite party not to create any interference in performing
the sacred thread ceremony (Upanayan) of the minor son by the petitioner is
rejected as premature.
Admittedly, the parties to the instant proceeding are married and
registered their marriage under the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955. It is also not in
dispute that from the said wedlock one male child and a female child are born
on 4th February, 2005 and 6th February, 2009 respectively. By passage of time
the relationship between the parties grew bitter and the record would reveal
that the parties have initiated several proceedings both civil and criminal
asserting their respective rights. The order is passed in a proceeding which
originated on the basis of an application taken out by the petitioner under
Guardians and Wards Act for custody of the minor children. It is also not in
dispute that an application for visitation as and by way of an interim measure
was also taken out in the said proceeding and has been disposed of by the
Court below which is also impugned in another revisional application being
C.O. 3229 of 2017.
The application which leads to passing the impugned order contains the
statement that since the parties are governed by the Hindu Religion, it is the
duty of the father to perform the sacred thread ceremony of the son before he
attains the age of 13 years. It has been stated in the said petition that as per
Shastrik Rules the sacred thread ceremony must be performed before the son
completes the age of 13 years. The reliance is placed upon an opinion of one of
the scholars of the Hindu customs and the same is annexed to the said
application. It is stated in the said application that the petitioner being the
father is duty bound to organize the sacred thread ceremony and further
possesses the right that of an Acharya of the minor child.
The wife in turn took a stand in the written objection submitted to the
said application that in the garb of performing the sacred thread ceremony the
petitioner intended to achieve something else and if the petitioner so desires
may negotiate the disputes and the rival claims of the parties in a proper
At the very outset, this Court must record that there is no express and /
or specific denial of the statements made in the said application by the
opposite party. The sum and substance of the statements made in the written
objection or that such application is filed with oblique motive and evil desire on
such superficial facts and therefore there is no need to interfere in the carriage
of the proceeding.
The learned Judge in the Court below rejected the said application on the
ground that it is premature and the reasons recorded in support thereof are
succinctly jotted down as under:-
“Admittedly, the minor son of the petitioner is now living under the care and
custody of his mother. Usually the Upanayan Ceremony is organized in any Hindu family
with the consultation of the parents and relatives of the said minor son and it cannot be
made only at the whims and will of either of the parents. In the instant case, it appears
that the opposite party being the mother is not willing to arrange or organize any
upanayan ceremony of his minor son. Therefore, how is it possible for the petitioner to
organize the upanayan ceremony of his son without having any consultation and
negotiation with the mother of the minor son. Therefore, the organizing the Upanayan
Ceremony of the minor son, it is the duty of the petitioner being the father of the minor son
to consult the matter with his wife and the relatives. Prior to that any attempt is made by
the petitioner appears to be meaningless.”
On a meaningful reading of the above quoted observation it is manifest
that the Trial Court proceeded to reject the said application as the opposite
party being the mother is not willing to arrange or organize an Upanayan
ceremony of his minor son and therefore it is not possible for the petitioner to
organize such ceremony without having any consultation and negotiation with
the mother. What can be seen from the aforesaid observation that the Court
wanted that before the said application is finally decided by the Court of Law, it
is imperative on the part of the petitioner to first consult and negotiate with the
mother for performance of such ceremony.
Though this Court does not approve the reasons provided for rejection of
the said application for the simple reason that once the parties are at
loggerhead, the negotiation and / or consultation for performance of such
ceremony would not yield any fruitful result. If one of the parties have
approached the Court for direction / order it is the duty of the Court to decide
the same on legal parameters. Initially, this Court thought that the impugned
order deserves interference but considering that the primary object is to see the
welfare of the child, this Court passed various orders on visitation of the father
with the minor children and kept the revisional application alive. However, the
parties insisted that the matter should be disposed of on merit.
It is submitted on behalf of the opposite party that the said application
has become redundant and / or infructuous for the simple reason that the
minor male child has crossed the age of 13 years. Such fact is not disputed. It
is really a matter of concern that the warring parents are litigating to satisfy
their egos without sensing that where the welfare of their children lies. It is a
common experience that when the spouses fall apart, the children are
projected as pawn and used as a tool against each other. The worst sufferer in
such litigation are the children. This Court does not delve to go into the nitty
gritty and genuinity of the allegations made in the written objection that such
application is taken out by the petitioner with oblique motive yet a sense of
responsibility is percolated through the said application to perform the rituals
and the customary rights despite having differences between themselves. It is a
collective obligation and responsibility of all the stakeholders including the
parents to act and behave in such a manner which is conducive, congenial and
advances to the welfare of the children.
In course of the hearing, it is submitted by the petitioner that he is
agreeable to bear all expenditures for performance of the ceremony. It is further
submitted that even if the opposite party is not agreeing that the petitioner
should perform such ceremony as natural father, he is agreeable to perform
such ceremony as ‘Acharya father’ and further agreed to perform such
ceremony at the residence of the wife or the place which she thinks fit and
suitable for such ceremony.
The petitioner went further when a suggestion was made by the wife that
such ceremony can be performed by anybody as ‘Acharya father’ and agrees to
the same with the condition that he should also be allowed to attain the
However, this Court cannot ignore the fact that it was all along a specific
stand of the petitioner that the sacred thread ceremony must be performed
before the male child attains the age of 13 years and since the child has
crossed such age, in my opinion, the application has become redundant and /
or infructuous. This Court feels to record that the sacred thread ceremony may
be performed at a later period of time but with certain conditions.
This Court, therefore, does not find that it is a fit case where the
application filed by the petitioner deserves to allowed in view of the changed
The revisional application is thus disposed of.
However, there shall be no order as to costs.
(HARISH TANDON, J.)