Sunday, September 5, 2010

Wife before brother: HC asks man to pay up

Ahmedabad: Wife comes before brother, for a husband. Making this observation, Gujarat High Court dismissed a plea filed by a man objecting to a family court’s order of paying alimony to estranged wife.

City-based tailor, Mohammed Irfan Usmangani Sheikh was asked to pay Rs 1,500 every month to his wife Munijabanu by the family court in March last year. The tailor found the amount of maintenance too much and approached the high court for reduction.
During the hearing before the high court, Sheikh’s lawyer argued that the cohabitation out of the marriage lasted for less than five months, and he is not able to earn enough to support wife and other family members,who include his brother, sister and mother.
Munijabanu’s counsel, however, opposed the argument and contended that the family court was correct in passing an order of alimony. Moreover, he also complained that Sheikh had defaulted in payment of maintenance amount on many occasions.
After going through the family court’s order and information provided by lawyers from both the sides, Justice Akil Kureshi observed that Sheikh is a young man of 23, an “able-bodied person and a skilled worker. Therefore it cannot be believed that he does not earn much.
His brother is stated to be 26 years of age. If he was keen to look after his brother, it was his first duty to maintain his wife,” with this observation, the court concluded that the family court’s order was correct.
Justice Kureshi ordered Sheikh to pay arrears in six equal monthly instalments, and if he continues to deposit the maintenance amount regularly, the family court would not indulge in coercive recovery. “However, in case of any violation of these conditions, it would be open for the family court to go ahead with the recovery proceedings,” the court order reads.

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