Landmark Judgment Grants Divorce in Favor of Husband on Grounds of Cruelty

Delhi High Court grants divorce on ground of cruelty by wife

In a significant legal development, a recent judgment by the Delhi High Court has granted divorce on ground of cruelty by the wife. The judgment, reserved on September 21, 2023, and pronounced on March 01, 2024, sets a precedent in matrimonial law.


The appellant, referred to as the husband in the judgment, filed the petition under Section 28 of the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955, read with Section 19 of the Family Courts Act, 1984. The appeal (MAT.APP.(F.C.) 63/2021) contested the dismissal of his petition seeking dissolution of marriage on grounds of cruelty under Section 13(1)(ia) of the HMA, 1955.

The marriage, which took place on March 10, 2007, witnessed strains early on, leading to the husband’s decision to seek legal intervention. The appellant claimed that the wife’s conduct, marked by quarrels, threats of suicide, and false accusations, amounted to cruelty. Issues surrounding household chores, threats of tarnishing the husband’s image, and abandonment of the matrimonial home were central to the husband’s plea.

Key Allegations:

The appellant, a member of the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF), detailed the tumultuous relationship, citing incidents from his training period in Orissa to subsequent postings. The wife’s alleged reluctance in performing household chores, coupled with unruly behavior, prompted the appellant to send her back to her parents’ home.

A significant incident on December 24, 2010, involving a family gathering, resulted in physical assault, police complaints, and a complex legal battle. Both parties filed cross-complaints, leading to a prolonged legal process.

Court’s Observations:

The judgment, authored by Hon’ble Mr. Justice Suresh Kumar Kait and Hon’ble Ms. Justice Neena Bansal Krishna, carefully examined the evidence presented. The court noted that the appellant failed to provide specific instances of cruelty by the respondent-wife. The allegations were deemed vague, non-specific, and general in nature.

Legal Precedents:

The court referred to established legal principles defining cruelty in matrimonial matters. Citing previous judgments, it emphasized that cruelty involves acts that endanger the petitioner’s well-being, either physically or mentally. Mental cruelty, as per legal precedents, includes conduct causing mental suffering or fear to the petitioner.

Acquittal in Criminal Proceedings:

The judgment highlighted the appellant’s acquittal in criminal proceedings related to dowry demand and physical abuse. The court acknowledged the six-year ordeal faced by the appellant and his family, emphasizing the need for concrete evidence to support such serious allegations.

Implications of the Judgment:

The court’s decision emphasizes that filing false and defamatory complaints, especially those leading to criminal charges, can constitute cruelty in matrimonial relationships. The judgment aligns with previous rulings that reckless allegations against the spouse and family members lower their reputation and amount to cruelty.


The Delhi High Court’s verdict in MAT.APP.(F.C.) 63/2021 sets a precedent by granting divorce to the husband on grounds of cruelty. The judgment underscores the importance of concrete evidence in cases involving serious allegations, emphasizing the need for a fair and balanced assessment of matrimonial discord.

Download Judgment

Click above to download this Judgment in the case titled MAT.APP.(F.C.) 63/2021. It can serve as a valuable resource for legal reference.

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