Monday, August 8, 2011

Man buys car, HC says pay up more alimony

Ahmedabad: A division bench of the Gujarat high court turned down a man’s plea to scale down the alimony to his estranged wife, after it learnt that the man had bought a luxury car.
Dharmesh Desai’s wife Hetal had moved the family court in Surat seeking divorce in 2009 and sought maintenance. The court asked Desai to give her Rs 3,000 every month till the divorce was settled. Hetal found the amount meager and moved the high court.
The single-judge bench took up the case and increased the maintenance amount from Rs 3,000 to Rs 7,500. However, the high court took notice of the fact that the lower court did not ask Desai to pay a penny to couple’s daughter, who was studying in Class XII. The high court on its own decided for fix the amount and accordingly asked Desai to pay Rs 10,000 every month towards the girl’s education.
Desai, who owns two shops in Surat and is engaged in the business of home appliances, challenged this order of payment of Rs 17,500 every month before a division bench stating that this amount is too much for him. He argued that the high court awarded maintenance amount for the daughter, event though his wife did not seek it before the trial court.
During the proceeding, Desai proposed one time settlement at payment of Rs 8 lakh on condition that his wife would withdraw all cases and the divorce petition would be converted to the petition for divorce by mutual consent. The woman agreed, but in the next proceeding Desai’s counsel told the court that she would not be withdrawing from the case because the man had gone back on his word.
Another lawyer appeared for Desai and argued that he did not have sufficient income to pay a huge amount to his separated wife and daughter. In the meanwhile, it was brought to the court’s notice that Desai had just purchased a brand new car worth Rs 6 lakh. This led the division bench to dismiss his appeal with observation that if he could buy a car, he could pay for her minor daughter’s education that is costly these days.

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