SC upholds right of illegitimate child for maintenance

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New Delhi, Oct 14 (UNI) The Supreme Court has held that even an illegitimate child born out of illicit relationship is entitled for maintenance under section 125 of CrPC provided the claim of unwed mother is reliable.

A bench comprising Justices S B Sinha and Harjit Singh Bedi in their judgement on October 12 set aside the order of Himachal Pradesh High Court rejecting the claim of on Dimple Gupta (minor) who had claimed maintenance from her father Rajiv Gupta on the grounds that she was born out of a relationship between her mother Narain Dassi and Gupta when they were staying together in Himachal Pradesh.

The petitioner had filed the petition through her mother. Her mother was a student of class X and was studying in Government High School in Tehsil Rampur when she conceived. According to the petitioner, Gupta tried to get her aborted in Chandigarh but doctor advised against it as Dassi was in the advanced stage of pregnancy.

The petitioner was born on July 8, 1991.

The Judicial Magistrate directed Rajiv Gupta to pay Rs 500 per month to the child for maintenance.

The High Court,however, reversed the trial court order on the grounds that since Dassi was an accomplice in the offence her claim cannot be accepted without corroboration.

The apex court, however, ruled ''we have considered the arguments advanced by the learned counsel for the parties.'' Concededly Dassi and Gupta were not married.

The appellant, therefore has virtually no rights which she can enforce except through an application under section 125 of the code of criminal procedure.'' The court also noted ''we are of the opinion that the entertainment of the petition under article 136 of the constitution of India is thus justified on the facts of the case and this is also the ratio of the judgement in Nand Lal's case.'' ''We have also perused the judgement of the trial magistrate and the High Court.

We find no reason to justify a reversal of the findings that had been recorded by the trail magistrate as the application was supported by the statement od Narain Dassi and several other witnesses,'' the court said.

We accordingly allow the appeal, set aside the judgement of the High Court and restore that of the trial magistrate,'' it added.

The appellant all the arrears till date within a period of three months was ordered to pay and continue to receive the maintenance regularly as per law.'' UNI

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