The Supreme Court allowed a husband to take a potentiality test after it noticed that he is willing to undergo the test.

The Court allowed the appeal filed by the husband against the order of the High Court. The case arose from marital disputes which cropped between the husband and the wife.

Justice Vikram Nath and Justice Prashant Kumar Mishra observed, “While allowing the revision petitions preferred by the respondent/wife the High Court has not assigned any cogent reason as to why the appellant/husband cannot be sent for potentiality test. Instead of dwelling on the contentions of the parties qua the merits of the interim applications decided by the Trial Court, the High Court focused on the conduct of the parties which was not at all germane for deciding the issue as to the validity of the order passed by the Trial court.

AOR Vijay Kumar represented the appellant, while Advocate K. S. Mahadevan appeared for the respondent.

The husband had filed an application under Section 9 of the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 (HMA), seeking restitution of conjugal rights, while the wife sought a divorce decree under Section 13(1) (ia) of the HMA on the ground that the marriage between the parties was not consummated because of the husband’s impotency.

Resultantly, the husband moved and application under Section 45 of the Indian Evidence Act read with Section 151 of the CPC. The Trial Court allowed this application and directed both parties to undergo medical tests, including a potentiality test for the husband, fertility test for the wife, and psychological/mental health tests for both.

The wife contested this decision as she was not willing to undergo any test be it fertility test or mental health check-up and argued that she cannot be compelled to undergo such tests. In the light od the same, the High Court overturned this decision, prompting the husband to appeal to the Supreme Court.

The Supreme Court noted the husband's willingness to undergo the potentiality test and stated that the High Court's decision lacked cogent reasoning. Consequently, the Court upheld the Trial Court's order for the husband to undergo the potentiality test.

Accordingly, the Supreme Court modified the order of the High Court and allowed the appeal.

Cause Title: Deep Mukerjee v. Sreyashi Banerjee (Neutral Citation: 2024 INSC 274)


Appellant: AOR Vijay Kumar; Advocates B Ragunath and Nc Kavitha

Respondent: AOR Rajesh Kumar; Advocates K. S. Mahadevan, Swati Bansal, Rangarajan .r and Aravind Gopinathan

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