Husband's paying capacity important while fixing maintenance: Court

New Delhi, Nov 13: The plea of a mentally unstable woman, seeking interim maintenance from her estranged husband in a domestic violence case, has been rejected by a Delhi court which noted that the man had a "meagre salary" and after providing for basic needs, he was left with "almost nothing".

Additional Sessions Judge Amit Bansal upheld magisterial court's order denying the interim maintenance to the woman, on the ground of financial status of the husband, who was earning merely Rs 4,500 per month and was already maintaining his widowed mother and mentally unstable child.


The judge, while noting that the man had to spend Rs 1,300 monthly for medical care of his mother and mentally unstable son, besides other miscellaneous expenses including power, water, etc., said, "It is evident that the husband is earning a meager salary and all of it is spent upon the above said heads of expenditure.

"The payment capacity of the husband and his liabilities have also to be considered while fixing the seems that after providing for minimum basic necessities and liabilities, he is left with practically almost nothing."

The court, while dismissing the appeal of the woman against the trial court order, also noted that she could not prove that the salary proof of her husband was false or that he had no such liabilities.

The court, however, took exception to the trial court's observation that it was "only a moral duty" of her husband to provide her maintenance.

"The trial court has committed an error of law by mentioning that it was only a moral duty of a husband to provide maintenance to his wife and children, as it is the legal duty of the husband...," the judge said. 


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