In an apparent bid to resolve a matrimonial dispute between a couple from Punjab, the Supreme Court has passed an unusual order that the woman should not to leave her husband without its permission as it found that “everything was not lost”.
A Bench of Justice Kurian Joseph and Justice Deepak Gupta directed the woman to accompany her husband (names withheld) right from the court.
“Without permission from the Court respondent/Rajpal shall not leave the company of the petitioner,” the Bench said while dealing with an appeal arising out of an order passed by the Punjab and Haryana High Court which dismissed the husband’s plea for divorce.
“The petitioner (husband) has been very gracious and fair in his submissions. The respondent wife has not instituted any case except one case for maintenance. We find that the parties should be given a chance to live together for a few weeks, keeping the case pending before us,” the Bench said in its December 1 order.
But what has raised many an eyebrow is the court’s direction to the wife to “behave herself properly”.
“Accordingly, respondent (wife) is directed to go with the petitioner (husband) today from the Court. The respondent is directed to behave herself properly and look after the petitioner and his aged mother,” the Bench said.
“Nobody from the family of the respondent (wife) shall interfere with their peaceful living. Without permission from the Court (the) respondent shall not leave the company of the petitioner (husband), the Bench went on to direct, posting the case for further hearing on January 17, 2018.
The man had sought divorce on grounds of cruelty and desertion under the Hindu Marriage Act. But a family court rejected his petition and the Punjab and Haryana High Court rejected his appeal, forcing him to approach the top court.