Wilful denial of sexual relationship by spouse cruelty: Delhi HCtext_fields
New Delhi: The Delhi High Court has upheld the divorce granted to a couple whose marriage effectively lasted for only 35 days due to non-consummation and the wife's resistance.
The court noted that wilful denial of sexual relations by a spouse amounts to cruelty, especially in newly-married couples.
A bench of Justices Suresh Kumar Kait and Justice Neena Kumar Bansal also observed that marriage without a sexual relationship is problematic and that disappointment in sexual relations is fatal to a marriage.
In the present case, the court observed, that the marriage was not consummated on account of resistance by the wife who also filed a police complaint claiming she was harassed for dowry about which there was "no cogent evidence". This can also be termed as cruelty, it said.
"In (a case), it (the high court has) .. observed that wilful denial of sexual relationship by a spouse amounts to cruelty, especially when the parties are newly married and this itself is a ground for grant of divorce," said the bench in an order dated September 11.
"In the present case, not only did the marriage between the parties subsist for barely 35 days but failed completely on account of deprivation of conjugal rights and non-consummation of marriage," the court said referring to the period the woman spent at her matrimonial home.
The court recorded that the couple got married according to Hindu customs and rites in 2004 and the wife soon went back to her parental home and did not return.
The husband later approached the family court for divorce on the grounds of cruelty and desertion.
The court concluded that the husband was entitled to a divorce based on cruelty, even though the ground of desertion was not proven.
“Making allegations of dowry harassment resulted in the registration of an FIR and the trial to follow can only be termed as an act of cruelty when the appellant has failed to prove even one incident of dowry demand,” the court said.
The court cited previous judgements that highlighted various acts that may amount to mental cruelty.
"In (a case), the Apex Court laid down various acts which may amount to mental cruelty and one such illustration was a unilateral decision of refusal to have intercourse for a considerable period of time without there being no physical incapacity or valid reason," added the court.
The evidence in this case supported the husband's claim that the wife did not allow him to consummate the marriage.
With inputs from agencies