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Ranjeet Solanki vs Annapurna @ Pinki on 20 November, 2019

HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE FOR RAJASTHAN AT
JODHPUR

D.B. Civil Misc. Appeal No. 2939/2019

Ranjeet Solanki S/o Shri Kamal Kishore Solanki, B/c Darji, R/o
Mohalla, Chudigaran, Opposite Bheru Ji Temple, Ward No. 34,
Bikaner

—-Appellant
Versus

1. Annapurna @ Pinki W/o Shri Ranjeet Solanki, D/o Shri
Vinod Kumar Kacchhawa, R/o B-1/203, Jaisal Kripa Co-
Operative Housing Society Ltd, Cabin Cross Road,
Narmada Nagar Gate, Bhainder (East), District Thane,
Maharashtra.

2. Priyansh S/o Shri Ranjeet Solanki, Minor Through Natural
Guardian Mother Smt. Annapurana @ Pinki. R/o B-1/203,
Jaisal Kripa Co-Operative Housing Society Ltd, Cabin
Cross Road, Narmada Nagar Gate, Bhainder (East),
District Thane, Maharashtra.

—-Respondents

For Appellant(s) : Mr. Jagdish Vyas
For Respondent(s) : Mr.Virendra Acharya

HON’BLE MR. JUSTICE SANGEET LODHA
HON’BLE MR. JUSTICE ARUN BHANSALI

Judgment

20/11/2019

1. This appeal is filed by the appellant assailing the legality of

the order dated 3.9.19 passed by the Family Court No.1, Bikaner in

Civil Case No.53/18, whereby while allowing an application

preferred by the respondent under Section 24 of the Hindu

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(2 of 4) [CMA-2939/2019]

SectionMarriage Act, 1955 (for short “the Act of 1955”), the appellant is

directed to pay maintenance pendente lite a sum of Rs.4,000/- per

month to the respondent-Smt. Annapurna for herself and

Rs.3,000/- per month for her son. That apart, the appellant is

directed to pay a lump sum Rs.35,000/- towards litigation

expenses to the respondent.

2. The appellant filed a petition against the respondent for

restitution of conjugal rights under Section 9 of the Act of 1955.

During the pendency of the petition, the respondent filed an

application under Section 24 of the Act of 1955, claiming

maintenance pendente lite from the appellant a sum of

Rs.10,000/- per month for herself and her son; Rs.15,000/-

towards the litigation expenses and travelling expenses for

attending each date of hearing before the Family Court, Bikaner.

The respondent averred in the application that she has no source

of income whereas, the appellant, an electrician, is earning Rs.

25,000-30,000 per month.

3. The appellant filed a reply to the application contending that

the respondent engaged in stitching and art work on sarees, is

earning Rs.10,000-15,000 per month. The appellant denying his

monthly income as alleged by the respondent, averred that he is

earning only Rs.4,000 to 5,000 per month.

4. After due consideration of the rival submissions, the Family

Court determined the maintenance pendente lite payable by the

appellant to the respondent for herself as Rs.4,000/-, Rs.3,000/-

per month for her son and a lump sum Rs. 35,000/- towards the

litigation expenses.

5. Learned counsel appearing for the appellant contended that

the respondent has deserted the appellant and therefore, she is

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(3 of 4) [CMA-2939/2019]

not entitled for any maintenance. The Family Court has seriously

erred in ignoring the fact that the respondent has her own source

of income. It is submitted that without there being any cogent

evidence regarding the appellant’s income, the maintenance

awarded by the Family Court is apparently excessive.

6. We have considered the submissions of the learned counsel

and perused the material on record.

7. Indisputably, the purpose behind Section 24 of the Act of

1955 is to provide necessary financial assistance to the party to

the matrimonial dispute who has no independent income of his

own sufficient for her or his support or to bear the expenses of the

proceedings. While considering the application for award of interim

maintenance, the relevant consideration is the inability of the

spouse to maintain himself or herself for want of independent

income or inadequacy of the income to maintain at the level of

social status of other spouse. No hard and fast rule can be laid

down for determination of the amount of interim maintenance.

8. Admittedly, no evidence was brought on record by the

appellant to establish that the respondent has her own source of

income. Though, the appellant had denied his sources of income as

alleged by the respondent but it was not even the case of the

appellant that he has no source of income whatsoever. The fact

that the appellant is working as an electrician is not denied.

Obviously, while working as an electrician, the appellant must be

earning a reasonable income and thus, the Family Court has

committed no error in determining the monthly income of the

appellant at Rs.15,000. The factum of respondent deserting the

appellant cannot be a ground to deny the maintenance pendente

lite under Section 24 of the Act of 1955.

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9. Thus, in absence of any evidence regarding the respondent

having any adequate source of income, in the considered opinion

of this Court, after due consideration of the facts and the

circumstances of the case, the amount of maintenance pendente

lite a sum of Rs.7,000/- per month determined by the Family Court

for the respondent and her son and Rs.35,000/- in lump sum

towards litigation expenses including travelling expenses for each

date of hearing, cannot be said to be excessive so as to warrant

interference by us in exercise of appellate jurisdiction.

10. For the aforementioned reasons, the appeal is devoid of any

merit, it is hereby, dismissed.

(ARUN BHANSALI),J (SANGEET LODHA),J
15-Aditya/-

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