Wife staying abroad for career not ‘cruelty’ to husband: Bombay HC

Mumbai: Observing that the wife’s decision to remain in Canada, where she settled with the couple son’s, is not “unjustified” or “selfish,” the Bombay High Court refused to grant a divorce to a 44-year-old engineer alleging cruelty and desertion following his spouse’s refusal to join him in India.

The court reproduced the woman’s resume, details of her flourishing career with a pharmaceutical company in Canada to note that the husband could rejoin his wife, especially since it was his idea to settle in Canada for better prospects in the first place.

A division bench of Justices Ujjwal Bhuyan and Prithviraj Chavan thus refused to entertain the husband’s appeal against a Family Court’s order dismissing his petition for divorce under section 13 (1)(ia) (cruelty) and 13(1)(ib) (desertion) of the Hindu Marriage Act 1955.

The bench further noted that while the husband had cited his ill health for not joining his wife back in Canada, he failed to provide any medical certificates to ratify his claims. Finally, the court cited the judgment of Samar Ghosh Vs. Jaya Ghosh, to observe that the couple’s relationship hadn’t deteriorated to such an extent that it would be impossible for them to unite.

“We hope that there is still scope for the couple to restore the bond at least for the sake of their child..,” the bench observed.