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HomeLawMaintenance provisions under Hindu Marriage Act are gender-neutral: Bombay High Court

Maintenance provisions under Hindu Marriage Act are gender-neutral: Bombay High Court

A bench of Justices Atul Chandurkar and Urmila Joshi-Phalke said that the requirement under the provisions is that the person seeking maintenance does not have sufficient income to support himself/ herself.

“Sections 24 and 25 make provision for maintenance to a party who has no independent income sufficient for his or her support, and necessary expenses. This is a gender neutral provision where either the wife or the husband may claim maintenance. The pre-requisite is that the person, who is claiming maintenance does not have independent income which is sufficient for her or his support during the pendency of the lis,” the Court said.

It further opined that the provision of Section 24 that entitles a spouse to seek maintenance during the pendency of the divorce proceedings is a benevolent provision.

“Section 24 is enacted to provide relief by way of maintenance and litigation expenses to a spouse unable to maintain itself during the pendency of the proceedings; it is benevolent provision. Sections 24 and 25 of the Hindu Marriage Act are enacted with the object of removing the handicap of a wife or husband with no independent income sufficient for living or meeting litigation expenses; such a relief can be granted to the husband as well, who may also be deprived of the same,” the Court said in the order passed on September 19.

Source: Barandbench

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