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Kirti Khanna vs Deepak Verma on 10 May, 2018

233 FAO-M-162-2017 with
CM-14363-CII-2017 CMM-89-2017


Present: Mr. Anil Chawla, Advocate, for the appellant.

Mr. Sourabh Goel, Advocate, for the respondent.


Respondent-husband had obtained a decree for nullity of

marriage under Sections 11 and 12 of the Hindu Marriage Act on the claim

that the appellant was already married at the time of marriage on

09.06.2010. Aggrieved against the judgment and decree, the appellant-wife

has preferred the appeal.

During pendency of the appeal, the appellant-wife has filed an

application under Section 24 of the Hindu Marriage Act. It is averred in the

application that the appellant-wife has got no source of income whereas the

respondent-husband is man of means and doing the business of goldsmith in

his own showroom at Amritsar and earning more than Rs.1 lac per month.

Besides this, he is owner of other moveable and immovable properties, as

such she claims maintenance pendente lite at the rate of Rs.50,000/- per


On notice having been issued to the respondent-husband, he

has contested the application. Respondent-husband, present in person, has

submitted that no doubt he was earlier working as a goldsmith and doing

business with his father but now he has left the said business and at present

he is residing in the dera of Radha Swami at Beas for the last three months.

However, he admits that on account of parties have patched up their

differences with the intervention of the mediation, he had started staying

with the appellant-wife subject to the condition that he will continue to

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deposit sum of Rs.5000/- per month but he claims that on account of she

having left his company, he has stopped paying that amount and that she is

not entitled to any maintenance pendente lite.

We have considered the facts and circumstances of the case and

are of the opinion that it is the statutory obligation of the respondent-

husband to maintain the appellant-wife even during pendency of

matrimonial litigation between them. The capability and capacity of the

able-bodied respondent-husband to earn money is not controversial. He

being an able bodied person is capable of earning. He admitted that he had

earlier been doing the business of goldsmith and three months prior from

today he had been working and paying sum of Rs.5000/- to the appellant-

wife when attempt was made for bringing about reconciliation. He has

expressed his inability, in view of above circumstances, to pay any

maintenance pendente lite or litigation expenses to the wife as of now.

Counsel for the respondent-husband, in support of respondent,

has submitted that a sum of Rs.5000/- was paid towards the household

expenses under an agreement. He relies upon judgment of the Supreme

Court in Yamunabai Anantrao Adhav Vs. Anantrao Shivram Adhav, 1988

(1) R.C.R. (Criminal) 322, wherein a second wife claiming maintenance

had been held to be not entitled for the same as the marriage would be a

nullity. The marriage being a nullity is subjudice before this Court. As per

the wording of Section 24 of the Hindu Marriage Act, a wife is entitled to

interim maintenance “in any proceedings” pending between the parties

under the Hindu Marriage Act as such the judgment cited by counsel for the

respondent is not absolutely applicable to the facts of present case.

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CM-14363-CII-2017 CMM-89-2017

Counsel for the appellant-wife, at this stage relies upon

judgment of the Single Bench of this Court in Manjeet Singh Vs. Parson

Kaur, 1990 (2) PLR 97 wherein such application had been dismissed

relying upon the judgment in Yamunabai Anantrao Adhav’s case (supra)

which judgment has been held to be not applicable in view of the statutory

right arising in favour of a spouse in any proceedings pending under the

Hindu Marriage Act. The said judgment of the Single Bench does not lay

down an absolute rule of law and is not applicable to the rights of the


We, in above circumstances, hold that the appellant-wife is

entitled to maintenance pendente lite under Section 24 of the Hindu

Marriage Act.

It cannot be believed that an able bodied person who is

technically expert in jewellery making in the present time would not be able

to earn anything especially when he has got a family business of jewellery

making. The husband cannot be permitted to adopt an evasive approach and

run away from his responsibilities by raising a claim that he has started

living in some Dera.

Our attention has been drawn by counsel for the appellant-wife

to the fact that application under Section 24 of the Hindu Marriage Act was

dismissed by the trial Court but the High Court in Civil Revision No.592-

2015 awarded a sum of Rs.7500/- per month.

Taking into consideration the fact that the respondent-husband

has expressed inability on account of his earning capacity having been

reduced, we deem it appropriate, in the interest of justice, to grant

maintenance pendente lite @ Rs.5000/- per month to the wife.

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CM-14363-CII-2017 CMM-89-2017

Application under Section 24 of the Hindu Marriage Act is

allowed. It is ordered that the respondent-husband will pay a sum of

Rs.5,000/- per month as maintenance pendente lite to the appellant-wife

with effect from the date of application i.e. May, 2017. It is made clear that

the amount paid by the respondent-husband during the process of mediation

proceedings for a period of three months, will be deductible while

calculating the amount due towards the maintenance pendente lite.

Litigation expenses are assessed as Rs.30,000/-. A sum of Rs.20,000/-

earlier paid towards the litigation expenses, will be deductible from the said


For payment of entire arrears of maintenance pendente lite

calculated till 31.07.2018 and balance of litigation expenses, adjourned to


Counsel for the respondent-husband submits that there are still

chances of amicable settlement by mediation.

Let both the parties again appear before the Mediation and

Conciliation Centre of Punjab and Haryana High Court, Chandigarh on

23.05.2018, on which date, 50% of the amount due towards the maintenance

pendente lite will be paid to the appellant-wife.

For awaiting the report of Mediation Centre, to come up on the

date fixed.


May 10, 2018. (HARI PAL VERMA)
harsha JUDGE

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