Guj HC upholds enhancement of alimony

Last Updated: Wednesday, August 10, 2011 - 18:48

Ahmedabad: The Gujarat High Court on Wednesday
rejected a man`s plea challenging enhancement of alimony
amount to his wife after it came to know that he had recently
purchased a new luxury car.

A division bench, comprising of Chief Justice S J
Mukhopadhaya and Justice J B Pardiwala, was of the view that
the single judge bench had rightly enhanced the amount of
interim maintenance.

"We are of the view that amount of Rs 17,500 per month
towards maintenance of wife and minor daughter, studying in
class XII, cannot be said to be, in any manner, unreasonable
or on a higher side," the court observed.

It further said that it has been informed that Dharmesh
Desai had bought a brand new car (Mahindra Logan) worth about
Rs six lakh.

Desai`s wife Hetal had moved the family court in Navsari
seeking divorce in 2009 after 18 years of marriage and had
sought maintenance. Hetal had sought divorce alleging
Dharmesh`s extra-marital affair.

"If the appellant-husband can afford to buy a brand new
car worth about Rs 6 lakh, then he can definitely pay an
amount of Rs 17,500 per month towards interim maintenance for
the well-being of his wife and minor daughter," the court
observed, while rejecting the man`s appeal.

Denying any relief to Dharmesh, the court observed, "From
the attitude exhibited by the appellant-husband it appears
that at any cost, he does not want to discharge his legal
obligation to maintain his wife and minor daughter."

A trial court had asked Dharmesh to pay Rs 3,000 every
month as interim maintenance to Hetal till the divorce was
settled. Hetal found the amount meagre and moved the high
court last year.

The single-judge bench of the high court which heard the
case enhanced the interim maintenance to Rs 17,500 per month
(Rs 7,500 for the wife and Rs 10,000 as maintenance for their
minor daughter studying in class 12).

Dharmesh, who owns two shops in Surat and is engaged in
the business of home appliances, challenged this order of
payment of Rs 17,500 every month before a division bench
stating that this amount is too much for him.

He argued that the high court awarded maintenance amount
for the daughter, even though his wife did not seek it before
the trial court.

During proceedings of the case, he had proposed one time
settlement by payment of Rs 8 lakh on condition that Hetal
would withdraw all cases against him and the divorce petition
would be converted to the petition for separation by mutual
consent.

Even after Hetal agreed to the proposal, Dharmesh went
back on his word saying that he could not afford paying such
huge sum as he was a small business man.

PTI



First Published: Wednesday, August 10, 2011 - 18:48

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