Matrimonial Case: Leniency Towards Women In Transfer Petitions Must Not Be Misused: Reiterates SC
Considering the status of the parties and the fact that the present is a petition filed by the wife seeking transfer of case filed by the husband from Mangaluru, Karnataka to Mumbai, Maharashtra, the Supreme Court held that no case is made out for transfer of the petition from Family Court at Mangaluru to Mumbai, since the petitioner (wife) is a permanent resident of Canada and she must be traveling abroad regularly.
Noticing the number of Transfer Petitions filed in matrimonial cases primarily by the wives seeking transfer of the matrimonial proceedings initiated by the husband, and Court normally has been accepting the prayer made while showing leniency towards ladies, the two-judge Bench of Justice Rajesh Bindal and Justice Aravind Kumar “took support from the decision in case of Anindita Das v. Srijit Das (2006) 9 SCC 197, wherein it was held that this leniency was being misused by women, and therefore observed that each and every case has to be considered on its own merits”.
AOR Shankar Divate appeared for the Petitioner and AOR Pai Amit appeared for the Respondent.
Going by the background of the case, the parties met on Facebook in the month of December 2019 and they got married as per Christian rites and customs at Mangaluru. After their marriage, the petitioner (wife) was ill-treated, insulted, and humiliated by the respondent (husband) and his family members at her matrimonial home in Mangaluru. Later, on the pretext of giving her a break for 10-15 days, the respondent booked a one-way ticket for the petitioner and sent her to Mumbai, and thereafter, he disconnected all relations with her.
However, later, when the petitioner came back to Mangaluru, she was denied entry into her matrimonial home and therefore, she lodged a police complaint. Subsequently, she came to know that the respondent has already issued a divorce notice. In reply, she stated that she was willing to come to her matrimonial house. When the petitioner received summons along with a copy of the divorce petition filed in the Family Court at Mangaluru, she preferred this present petition seeking transfer of her case pending before the Family Judge at Mangaluru, to the Family Court at Mumbai, contending that she has financial difficulty.
After considering the submissions, the Supreme Court found that the petitioner is a permanent resident of Canada and she had shifted there in the year 2014 and was working there on a well-paid job, however, came to India for the matrimonial alliance.
“As is evident from the observations in the Mediation Report dated 08.02.2023 submitted by Justice S.J. Vazifdar, the petitioner was in Canada throughout the mediation process and attended the proceedings online. There is no child born out of wedlock to be taken care of”, added the Bench.
The Bench noted that both the parties are well educated and engaged in their own jobs and professions, and the petitioner can travel to Mangaluru to attend the hearing of the case and can also seek exemption from appearance whenever required.
Finding that the parties had lived together only for 40 days and it takes time to settle down in marriage, the Supreme Court observed that the present is not a fit case for exercise of power under Article 142 of the Constitution of India as the good sense may prevail on the parties.
Accordingly, the Apex Court dismissed the transfer petition.
Cause Title: Delma Lubna Coelho v. Edmond Clint Fernandes