Q: I was in a relationship for the last 10 years and we had decided to get married. Three years ago the girl told me that she had a physical relation with her sisterís husband for two years. I ignored that although I was hurt. Then we too became physically involved. Recently, I came to know that she is marrying someone else. I feel cheated. Is there any provision in law that I can use against her?
Anup Sharma, Calcutta
A: Though such cases are rarely filed in courts, since a breach of promise to marry results in injury to feelings, emotional trauma, disappointment and mental agony, exemplary damages can be claimed. But you have to be able to prove your case. In a decision passed by the Gujarat High Court in 1986, in the Prema Korgaokar vs Mustak Ahmed case, exemplary damages were allowed to the plaintiff in her action against the defendant.
Q:I have a flat in Calcutta, where I do not reside. When I tried to sell it one of my neighbours told a prospective buyer that there are irregularities regarding the ownership of the flat. I have the mutation certificate, tax receipts and regular maintenance receipts. What legal steps can I take against this neighbour?
Sumankalyan Roy, via email
A: If you are sure that your neighbour is causing mischief, you could send him a legal notice addressing your issue and asking him to refrain from such activities. However, a genuine buyer would be more likely to go by your property documents rather than rely on hearsay.
Q:The flat we reside in is jointly owned by my wife and son. My wife wants to gift her share to our son but wants to put in two conditions. First, that we shall be allowed to stay in the flat till our death. And second, that in the unfortunate event of our son dying before us, she will get back her part of the property. Is such a revocable gift permissible? Can I accept the gift on behalf of my son, who is a non-resident Indian, under a power of attorney?
Arnab Dasgupta, Calcutta
A: If the parties agree that a gift shall be revocable wholly or in part at the will of the donor, the gift would be void in context of The Transfer of Property Act, 1882. The conditions that your wife wants to add do not seem to be legally tenable and may lead to legal complications in future. Hence it is better that she makes a will instead.