Hindu Marriage Act ,1955 (Divorce and Ground of Cruelty)

                                                                                       SECTION 13

                 Divorce and Ground of Cruelty

The conduct by either of the spouse should be of such a nature which should fall in the ambit of cruelty under the Matrimonial Law. The Court needs to look after all the background and circumstances because of which the couple wants to get separated. Basically, the Court has to investigate the reason for the deterioration of the marriage.

Section 13- Divorce on Ground Of Cruelty – Appeal filing of a complaint by the wife under the Domestic Violence Act itself can never be considered as an act of cruelty unless it is found by positive evidence that it was a false complaint No case made out for decree of divorce on the ground of cruelty – Appeal allowed.

Section 13- Divorce on the ground of cruelty – Appeal When it is not in dispute that husband used to come late at nights, that in her presence husband  himself admitted that the fact that said women to his friend and on basis of said circumstances if the wife has doubted the relationship, it can not be said that such doubt was without any basis case made out for decree of divorce on the ground of cruelty- Appeal allowed

Cruelty for the purpose of Divorce | Lexspeak Legal

What is cruelty?

Cruelty refers to violent acts. However, a mere quarrel, petty outrageous behavior, or differences between the spouses does not come in the ambit of cruelty because this is something that is common in day-to-day married life. Conducts that would amount to cruelty should be grave and severe in nature. Grave violence doesn’t always mean physical violence. Though physical violence is an essential factor that constitutes cruelty but apart from that a continuous process of ill-treatment or mental or physical torture to either of the spouse would also amount to cruelty.

Bombay HC Upholds Divorce On Grounds Of Cruelty Towards Husband Whose Wife Filed False 498A Case [Read Judgment]

Cruelty as a ground for Divorce 

The day to day situations in a matrimonial life creates an ambiguity within the couples to lead their life with each other peacefully. Although there is no such exhaustive definition to what all condition would lead to an offense of cruelty if we go through a case of marital abuse happening around us, then we can conclude of certain conditions such as:

  • The physical violence on the spouse.
  • Having affairs or committing adultery with not just the spouse’s knowledge but even publically accepting it.
  • And also in cases where either of the spouses is falsely accused of committing adultery.
  • The constant manifestation of agony, rage with the addition of yelling or abusing at the spouse.
  • Demoralizing and restricting the spouse by every means to be an independent individual and compelling the spouse to be in a marital relationship where the spouse is left with no other option but to depend on the other.
  • Not disclosing any fact or incident of an acquired sexually transmitted disease while they are already into marital life. And the list goes on.

The conduct by either of the spouse should be of such a nature which should fall in the ambit of cruelty under the Matrimonial Law. The Court needs to look after all the background and circumstances because of which the couple wants to get separated. Basically, the Court has to investigate the reason for the deterioration of the marriage.

Grounds of Divorce as per The Hindu Marriage Act

Adultery

The concept of Adultery may not be considered an offense in many countries. But as per the Hindu Marriage Act, in the matrimonial offense, adultery is considered as one of the most important grounds for seeking a divorce. Adultery means the consensual and voluntary intercourse between a married person with another person, married or unmarried, of the opposite sex. Even the intercourse between the husband and his second wife i.e. if their marriage is considered under bigamy, the person is liable for the Adultery.

Essentials of Adultery

  1. One of the spouses involved in the intercourse with another person, married or unmarried, of the opposite sex.
  2. Intercourse should be voluntary and consensual.
  3. At the time of the act, the marriage was subsisting.
  4. There must be sufficient circumstantial evidence to prove the liability of another spouse.

Cruelty

The concept of cruelty includes mental as well as physical cruelty. Physical cruelty means when one spouse beats or causes any bodily injury to the other spouse. But the concept of mental cruelty was added as the spouse can also be mentally tortured by the other spouse. Mental Cruelty is a lack of kindness that adversely affects the health of the person. Well it is easy to determine the nature of physical cruelty but difficult to say about mental cruelty

  1. What is considered as Mental Cruelty against Husband by wife:
  2. Humiliating the husband in front of his family and friends.
  3. Undertaking the termination of pregnancy without husband consent.
  4. Making false allegations against him.
  5. Denial for Martial Physical Relationship without a valid reason.
  6. Wife having affair.
  7. Wife living an immoral life.
  8. The constant demand for money.
  9. Aggressive and uncontrollable behavior of Wife.
  10. Ill-treatment to the husband’s parents and family.Cruelty to Women [S. 498-A IPC and allied sections] | SCC Blog

What considered as Mental Cruelty against wife by Husband

  1. False accusation of adultery.
  2. The demand for dowry.
  3. Impotency of Husband.
  4. Force to abort the child.
  5. The problem of drunkenness of husband.
  6. Husband having affairs.
  7. The husband lives an immoral life.
  8. Aggressive and uncontrollable behavior of the husband.

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