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FROM WHICH DATE THE MAINTENANCE WOULD BE GIVEN BY THE HUSBAND

Submitted during Internship under Legal Specs by Khushi Jain.

There are many cases in the court in which wife want maintenance from their husbands but these cases are dragged by the courts for five years, seven years, ten years or even more than that. So, the question here arises that from which date the maintenance would be given by the husband i.e., whether it is from the date on which the case was filed or on the date on which the judgment was given by the court?

There are various provisions provided by the law in different statutes:

  1. In Section 125 of Code of Criminal Procedure it was given in the (2) that any such maintenance would be payable from the date of order or if ordered by the court from the date of the application and expenses of proceeding would be given to the wives, children or parents.

  2. In the Section 24 of Hindu marriage law, it was stated that maintenance would be payable but it is not clearly mentioned that from which date the maintenance would be payable.

  3. In the Section 20 of the protection of women from domestic violence Act, 2005 it was provided in the subclause (d) that maintenance would be given to the aggrieved party as well as if he or she is having children including the order of maintenance given under Section 125 of the Cr.P.C. but it is nowhere mention that from which state it would be payable. But it is provided in the Section 12 of the same act that the application should be decided within the 60 days from the date of first court hearing.

  4. In the Section 18 of the Hindu adoptions and maintenance act, 1956 it is also given in subclause (1) that a Hindu wife is entitled to get a maintenance by her husband during her lifetime but it is not mentioned anywhere which state it should be payable.

There are various conflicting views of high courts that are:

  1. In Bina Devi v state of Uttar Pradesh, the Allahabad High Court held that if it is not stated by the magistrate that from which date the maintenance is payable then it would be effective from the date of the order given by the magistrate under Section 125(2) of Cr.P.C.

  2. In the case Samir Banerjee v Sujata Banerjee, it was held by the High Court that under Section 24 of Hindu Marriage Act there is no date mentioned that from which the maintenance should be paid. So, it was on the discretion of court that the award of maintenance should be payable from the date of service of summons.

  3. In Gauri Das v Pradyumna Kumar Das, Odisha High Court held that the ordinary rule is to award maintenance from the date of service of summon.In the case Lavlesh Shukla v Rukmani, Delhi High Court held that if the wife is unemployed then the maintenance is payable from the date of application to overcome the financial crisis.

  • Not only in High Court but Supreme Court are also conflicting in their judgements;

  1. In the case Shail Kumari Devi and Ors. V Krishnan Bhagwan Pathak, it was held by the Supreme court that according to “normal rule” the maintenance should be granted from the date of order but if court wants maintenance can be granted from the date of application under Section 125(2) of Cr. P.C. but reason should be awarded in both the cases.

  2. In the case Bhuvan Mohan Singh v Meena, the family court took nine years to decide and finally it was ordered the maintenance should be paid from the date of order. The High Court held that the maintenance should be granted from the date of application as she had suffered immensely during the proceedings. Finally, the Supreme Court held that for awarding the maintenance from the date of application applied express orders should be give one with proper reason.

  3. In the latest ruling provided by the Supreme Court, in the case Rajneesh v Neha and Ors., it was clearly mentioned that it become necessary to issue directions to bring about uniformity and consistency in the orders passed by all the courts by directing that maintenance be awarded from the date on which the application was made before the concerned court. The right to claim maintenance must date back to the date of filing the application since the period during which the maintenance proceeding remained pending is not within the control of the applicant.

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