The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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SC stay on alimony to husband

New Delhi, Oct. 2 (PTI): In what would appear unusual, a man showing that he was ill and hence unable to earn sought maintenance from his working wife. A Hyderabad family court even fixed the maintenance amount at Rs 3,000 per month. However, when wife N. Chandra Shobha moved the Supreme Court through counsel Wasim Ahmed Quadri, it stayed the trial court order and issued a notice to the husband.

Shobha had earlier approached Andhra Pradesh High Court, which had first stayed the order but later asked her to pay the amount.

An apex court bench of Justices V.N. Khare and Ashok Bhan expressed surprise over the facts of the case and issued a notice to the husband while staying the operation of the trial court order which had directed her to pay the maintenance amount.

Shobha was married to N. Vimal Prasad in November 1984. She faced humiliation and mental torture whenever she refused to give him money.

Shobha walked out 1997 and began staying with her parents as her husband did not change his attitude. A year later she filed a divorce petition before a Hyderabad court on grounds of cruelty and mental torture.

This prompted the husband to file an application for restitution of conjugal rights, claiming that he had the ability to maintain his wife and run the house. However, he claimed that he was ill and was unable to maintain himself and therefore sought maintenance from his wife. Shobha told the court that he was hale and hearty and was resourceful as he was maintaining a scooter purchased by her.

The trial court did not believe that cruelty and mental torture was meted out to her and rejected the divorce petition.

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