Thursday, July 18, 2013

HC asks man to pay wife costs for unnecessary litigation

AHMEDABAD: Gujarat high court has asked a man to pay Rs 25,000 to his wife as legal costs as he had forced her to enter into a legal battle over the custody of their daughter.

The court imposed cost on him for challenging the orders of the trial court and the Supreme Court by citing his constitutional rights. It observed that because of him, the wife was left with no option but to incur heavy expenses on a court battle.

Francis Joseph and Shobha Joseph have been in a legal battle over the custody of their daughter in Vadodara's family court. The court had given custody of the child to the mother but this was not acceptable to Francis. He challenged the decision before the principal judge but here, too, he was not able to get the order he wanted. Francis had even levelled allegations the court of the principal judge was 'prejudiced' against him and also made remarks about the functioning of the court. He also complained about the judge in his petition filed before the high court. His wife's lawyer placed before the court how Francis took every issue to the apex court whenever the trial court ruled against him. He also accused the petitioner of 'cunningly' drafting the petition to deprive the child from her mother's love.

Justice G B Shah observed: "The manner in which this petition is drafted, it appears that the petitioner belongs to the creed, which does not have any respect for truth and to achieve his goal, he appears to make allegations against any one." The judge upheld the order of the family court giving custody of child to the mother. The court went on to punish the petitioner for his conduct and told him to pay the amount to his wife for unnecessarily dragging her to courts.

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