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‘Desertion’ mentioned under S. 13(1)(ib) of Hindu Marriage Act is not withdrawal from a place but from the state of things
Dundappa vs Renuka
Karnataka HC, Dharwad Bench
MFA No. 21724 of 2010 (MC)
About/from the judgment:
‘Desertion’ mentioned under S. 13(1)(ib) of Hindu Marriage Act is not withdrawal from a place but from the state of things!
The husband filed the petition under Section 13(1)(ib) of HMA against his wife, seeking dissolution of their marriage. The said petition was dismissed by the learned Principal Judge. The appellant contended that the court below committed a serious error even after assessing the evidence of the respondent who categorically stated in her disposition that she did not want to live with the appellant.
The High Court perused the material on record and submissions made in behalf of the parties. The Court found that the respondent in her cross-examination admitted that she resided with her husband for two years after the marriage and she had lived in her parental home after the marriage for about six years. This meant that after her marriage for more than half of the period she lived at her parental home. It was also noticed that even after graduating in her studies she did not join the husband to live with him. The respondent did not give any reason for her living separately from her husband. It was found that in total, the respondent lived separately from her husband for about 16 years, which fact was established. Accordingly the factum of separation was also established.
It was also observed that ‘desertion’ mentioned under Section 13(1)(ib) of the HMA is not the withdrawal from a place but from a state of things, for what the law seeks to enforce is the recognition and discharge of the common obligations of the married state. In the instant case, the wife sated that she was not ready to live with the husband. As such, the animus deserendi on the part of the wife was established.
Accordingly, the appeal was allowed. The impugned order was set aside and the marriage between the parties was dissolved.
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