The Allahabad High Court has said even if a husband has no income from a job he is duty-bound to provide maintenance to his wife as he can earn about Rs 300-400 a day as an unskilled labourer. A bench of justice Renu Agrawal of the Lucknow bench of the High Court made the observations while dismissing a revision petition of the man against a family court order asking him to pay Rs 2,000 monthly as maintenance to his estranged wife.
Justice Agrawal directed the principal judge of the trial court to take all recourse against the husband for the recovery of the maintenance already awarded in favour of the wife.
The husband had filed the revision petition before the high court on February 21, 2023, challenging the order of the Family Court, Number 2, which had asked him to pay the maintenance under section 125 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC).
According to the case details, the couple got married in 2015. The wife lodged an FIR against the husband and in-laws over dowry demand, and left their house to live with her parents in 2016.
The husband pleaded before the HC that the principal judge failed to consider that his wife was a graduate and was earning Rs 10,000 a month from teaching. He also said he was seriously ill and was under treatment. He also pleaded he was working as a labourer and lived in a rented room and has to take care of his parents and sisters.
In the order, the High Court said the husband could not produce any document to prove the wife earns Rs 10,000 from teaching. It also did not consider the man’s submission that his parents and sisters are dependent on him and that he earns a little from agriculture and by working as a labourer.
The court considered that the husband was a healthy man and was capable of earning money through physical work.
“For the sake of argument, if the court presumed that the husband had no income from his job or from a rent of Maruti van, even then he was duty-bound to provide maintenance to his wife as is held by the Supreme Court in the case of Anju Garg in 2022 as, if he engaged himself in labour work he may earn as about Rs 300 to Rs 400 per day as a minimum wages as an unskilled labour,” the HC observed.
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