Justice Shampa Dutt (Paul) noted that the petitioner woman was married to her husband in 2003 and that she was allegedly driven out of her matrimonial home in 2012 after 9 years of marriage.
A man who is entitled to marry for the second time under personal law is duty bound to maintain his first wife, the Calcutta High Court observed on Monday while quashing a sessions court order which had reduced the monthly maintenance for the first wife of a husband from ₹ 6,000 to ₹ 4,000 [Sefali Khatun @ Bibi vs State of West Bengal]
Single-judge Justice Shampa Dutt (Paul) noted that the petitioner woman was married to her husband on October 12, 2003 and that she was allegedly driven out of her matrimonial home on October 12, 2012, i.e. after demands for dowry were not fulfilled.
Her Husband allegedly married another lady and then the petitioner’s wife was driven out for want of more dowry, the Court added.
“A man who can marry for the second time (permitted under personal law), is duty bound to maintain his first wife of 5 years. A woman who has diligently, sincerely and loving put in so many years her life, in a relationship with the husband, deserves to be looked after and cared for by him, as long as she needs or requires the same,” the bench observed in its order.
The wife had challenged the order passed by a session judge on February 27, 2019 which quashed the verdict of a family court dated October 6, 2016.
The family court had ordered her husband to pay ₹ 6,000 as monthly maintenance to the petitioner. However, the sessions judge reduced the amount to ₹ 4,000.
This led to the appeal before the High Court.
Source: Bar & Bench