New Delhi: Irked by the behaviour of an
estranged couple, the Supreme Court on Thursday said their minor
daughter should not be a casualty of the ego clash and wryly
observed that a person loses his or her independence after
"Once a person is married, where is the question of
independence? It is lost," a bench of Justices Deepak Verma
and K S Radhakrishnan quipped while dealing with a matrimonial
dispute between a military officer and his estranged wife
working with a software company.
The bench made the remarks after the counsel for the
husband Hitesh complained that the marriage had "irretrievably
broken down" to such an extent that the wife, after filing of
the suit for divorce, taunted the husband with "happy
He submitted there was no point in the couple living
together as they are residing separately for the past 10 years
and the wife is now unwilling to grant divorce.
The counsel made the submission to drive home the point
that the wife, after agreeing for divorce by "mutual consent",
has now withdrawn her consent.
"That is the dividend of marriage!" the bench said when
the counsel said the husband was suffering from various
The apex court however, said that in the battle of egos
between the couple, the child`s interest should not be
"The worst sufferer will be the child. We do not want
this to happen. It is better you sort out the matter mutually
and come to a settlement," the bench told the couple.
Though the husband agreed to pay a permanent alimony
of Rs 5.4 lakh, Rs five lakh insurance policy for the child
and foot the education expenses of the minor girl besides
transferring a piece of land in his name in Hyderabad to the
estranged wife, the latter sought time for taking a decision
on the undertaking.
The wife suggested that instead of transferring the
land in Hyderabad, the husband can buy her a piece of land in
"That may be impossible. Do you know the value of land
in Delhi. Even we are not able to purchase a plot in Delhi
because of the huge price. The price off land in the Judges
Colony which was Rs 22 lakh in 2000 is today more than Rs two
crore, " the bench said in response to the wife`s demand.
As the woman insisted that she needed time to take a
decision, the court adjourned the matter for further hearing