Maintenance of wife under Hindu law

Maintenance of wife under Hindu law


The term maintenance has been utilized from a wide perspective, it incorporates maintenance as an arrangement for food, clothing, home, schooling and clinical participation and treatment as indicated by Hindu Adoptions and Maintenance Act, 1956. If there arises an occurrence of an unmarried daughter, it incorporates sensible costs of her marriage. In many frameworks of law, wife has an uncommon situation in her husband’s family unit. Most frameworks of law perceive the obligation of husband to keep up his wife inasmuch as marriage stays alive and the wife stays reliable. In many frameworks, the obligation exists even after the disintegration of marriage. A divorced wife is included for the expression “wife”. The duty and the obligation of husband to keep up his wife doesn’t emerge out of any agreement, express or inferred, however just out of the status of marriage, out of the wedlock of husband and wife. The obligation to keep up his wife starts with marriage anyway the wife ought to be a legitimately married wife. A woman marrying a generally married man whose marriage is resource isn’t qualified for maintenance.


Right to maintenance for wife

It arises in the following three situations-

  • At the point when the wife lives with her husband
  • At the point when the wife lives separate from her husband, and
  • At the point when the wife lives separate under a pronouncement of court (judicial partition) or when the marriage is broken up.

Section 18 of Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act, 1956

According to Section 18(1) of Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act, 1956 the wife is qualified for get the maintenance sum from her husband until she dies or he passes on. The Hindu wife is additionally qualified to take/get maintenance regardless of whether she lives independently from her husband under after grounds:

  1. At the point when the husband is subject for desertion.
  2. At the point when the husband is subject for cruelty.
  3. At the point when the husband is experiencing leprosy.
  4. The husband is obligated for bigamy.
  5. The husband changes over his religion without the consent of the wife.
  • State of Haryana v. Smt. Santra (2000) – it was held that it is an obligation made by Hindu Law and emerges out of jural connection of the party.

Section 19 of the Hindu adoption and Maintenance Act, 1956

Section 19 talks about maintenance of widowed daughter-in-law. Provides that a widowed daughter-in-law is qualified for be maintained by her father–in – law. Section 19 run as follows:

A Hindu wife, regardless of whether wedded previously or after the initiation of this Act, will be qualified to be maintained after the passing of her husband by her father-in-law provided and to the degree that she can’t maintain herself out of her own earnings or other property.

  • Raj Kishore Mishra v. Meena Mishra (1995) – it was held that where from the domain of the parents, the daughter-in-law can maintain herself, question of father-in-law doesn’t emerge.

Section 125 of the Code of Criminal Procedure

According to Section 125 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, just a woman either take divorce or given divorce by her husband and who hasn’t remarried some other man is qualified to get maintenance. A wedded woman who won’t live with her husband since her husband is subject for desertion or obligated for cruelty or is experiencing leprosy or at risk for bigamy or convert his religion without the consent of the wife can guarantee an exceptional recompense under this Act.

  • Velusamy v. D.Patchaiammal (2010) – The wife recorded a suit against husband demanding the maintenance according to Section 125 of the Code of Criminal Procedure. Here the court gives the Maintenance to the wife. Under Section 125 of the Code of Criminal Procedure the individual needs to keep up:
    1. His Wife, who incapable to look after herself.
    2. His Legitimate or illegitimate minor child whether married or not married, who unfit to look after itself.
    3. His father and mother, who incapable to look after themselves.
  • Gomaji v. Smt. Yashoda (1996) – In this case, the petitioner is the Husband and the Respondent is the wife. The Husband documented a case under Section 13 of the Hindu Marriage Act looking for a divorce from his wife. What’s more, the Respondent recorded an application under Section 125 of Code of Criminal Procedure guaranteeing Maintenance. Here the court acknowledges the divorce and passed the request against Husband to give monthly Maintenance to his wife.

Section 23(2) of the Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act. 1956

Maintenance as an award to wife. Section 23 of the Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act characterizes the individuals who can guarantee the maintenance and how the maintenance can be determined. The examining variables of the sum are:

  1. Status and Position of the parties.
  2. The fundamental need of the claimant.
  3. The fundamental solace which a sensible man needs.
  4. The estimation of the property whether portable and ardent, of the Respondent.
  5. The pay of the respondent.
  6. The quantity of individuals who relied monetarily upon the respondent.
  7. The level of connection between the two.
  • Manpreet Singh Bhatia v. Sumita Bhatia (2016) – The elements that are mulled over by the Courts for allowing interim maintenance have been repeated by the Delhi High Court in this case:
    1. The sensible necessities of the spouse guaranteeing maintenance
    2. The status of the parties
    3. The autonomous pay and property controlled by the spouse asserting maintenance
    4. The quantity of people the spouse giving maintenance needs to keep up separated from the claimant
    5. The way of life that spouse guaranteeing maintenance used to enjoy in her marital home
    6. The liabilities of the spouse giving maintenance
    7. The arrangements of the essential necessities of the spouse asserting maintenance, for example, food, shelter, clothing, clinical requirements, and so on
    8. The installment ability of the spouse giving maintenance
    9. The Court may utilize its attentiveness when all particular types of revenue of the spouse giving maintenance are undisclosed
    10. The spouse paying maintenance should release the expense of prosecution of the divorce proceedings
    11. The amount granted under Section 125 is customizable against the amount granted under Section 24 of the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955.

The Delhi High Court additionally expressed that the Court should concede interim maintenance in proper cases as a release of judicial duty to guarantee that the poverty-stricken spouse does not endure on account of the well-off spouse.

How to claim maintenance?

  • A wife is needed to file a maintenance request in a family court which has suitable jurisdiction to manage the issue.
  • The maintenance appeal should be filed with the help of a decent divorce advocate in India and should contain all the imperative facts and remedy looked for from the court.
  • The maintenance request is filed for certain important documents like an affidavit, documents identifying with the pay of both, the husband and wife, and so on.

Author: Kavya S,
CHRIST (Deemed to be University), 4th year BA LLB

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