0

A wife has the right to live at her husband’s co-owned property: High Court of Delhi

Right of residence under the DV Act is exclusive to and isolated from any right that may arise under Section 9 of the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955. A co-owned house by the husband provides the necessary protection to a wife to live at the house entitling her to claim a right to residence in a shared household, which would mean a house belonging to or taken on rent by the husband, or the house which belongs to the joint family of which the husband is a member and the same was upheld by High Court of Delhi through the learned bench led by JUSTICE CHANDRA DHARI SINGH in the case of OM PRAKASH GUPTA & ANR vs. ANJANI GUPTA & ANR [CRL.M.A. 15072/2021] on 08.03.2022.

The facts of the case are that Marriage between the Respondent and the son of the Petitioners, Mr. Alok Gupta, was solemnized according to Hindu rites and rituals and Petitioner is the father-in-law of the Respondent. The relationship between the Respondent and her in-laws was cordial in the beginning, however, it started to deteriorate with time. The Respondent left her matrimonial home. Consequently, more than 50 cases, both civil and criminal, were filed by the parties against each other. One of these cases were initiated by the Respondent under the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005, and during the proceedings the Respondent claimed right to residence in the property wherein the husband of the Petitioner is the 50 percent owner of the co-owned house.

The petitioner’s counsel submitted that the learned Appellate Court while passing the Order failed to address various issues raised by the Petitioner before it. It was submitted that the Appellate Court wrongly upheld the right of residence to the Respondent as the said premises were in the name of the wife and son of the Petitioner, therefore, the Respondent had no reason to claim the right in the said property.

The respondent’s counsel submitted that the premises in question, is the matrimonial home of the Respondent and she has been rightfully entitled to residence in the said property by the learned Metropolitan Magistrate. The right to residence of the Respondent arises out of the 50 per cent ownership of her husband in the said premises.

The Court held that the Respondent has a right to live at her husband’s co-owned property and that the fact of likelihood of filing of cases against the Petitioners cannot affect the Respondent’s right to live at her matrimonial house.

The Court observed that, “right of residence under the DV Act is exclusive to and isolated from any right that may arise under Section 9 of the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955. A co-owned house by the husband provides the necessary protection to a wife to live at the house entitling her to claim a right to residence in a shared household, which would mean a house belonging to or taken on rent by the husband, or the house which belongs to the joint family of which the husband is a member.”

Click here to read the Judgment

Judgment reviewed by – Shristi Suman

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Open chat