Maintenance must enable woman to enjoy pre-divorce lifestyle, rules Court

A man signing divorce papers. (Photo: Shutterstock)

A monthly interim maintenance amount of Rs 3,500 is not high in view of the cost of living in Delhi, a court here has observed while dismissing a man’s plea against an order directing him to maintain his estranged wife.

The court, while denying relief to the man, accused in a domestic violence case, said an interim maintenance is given to a woman as she is entitled to a status which she was enjoying as a married woman.

“Keeping in view the mandate of superior courts, the purpose behind awarding an interim maintenance is not only to save the wife from starvation and destitution…She is also entitled to lead the life which she was enjoying before parting the company of her spouse.

“In my opinion, considering the socioeconomic status of parties, the interim maintenance as awarded by the trial court does not seem to be on a higher side, especially keeping in view the cost of living index in a metropolitan city like Delhi,” Additional Sessions Judge Lokesh Kumar Sharma said.

In his appeal filed against the magisterial court order, the man contended that the woman was a professional teacher and was earning a handsome salary.

He had claimed that the woman was trying to take benefits by seeking court’s sympathy and had levelled false allegations against him.

The woman had lodged a complaint against her husband for offences under sections 498A (subjecting women to cruelty) and 406 (criminal breach of trust) of the IPC.

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