Matrimonial Reliefs under Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 by Remiya Rani

Today’s topic is based on very common issue. As we all know that after some age of maturity almost everyone get married according to the rituals of the particular society. It is often said that marriage is performed or done for carrying on family lineage and procreation of children. But all marriages are not successful and eternal. These times we always hear that because of some misunderstandings, mis-communication or by any other problem some dispute arise in matrimonial relations and they get separated. A number of cases come to judiciary due to differences in interest or opinion among couples. So here we will discuss as to what are the reasons for Matrimonial Disputes and what are the Reliefs under Hindu Marriage Act.
So from my point of view there are basically 6 reasons for matrimonial disputes.
1. Infidelity – We have seen a no. of cases where any of the spouse has an extramarital affair or marriage like relation with other person. So this is one of the reason for matrimonial disputes.
2. Domestic violence – In many families we have observed that the reason for unsuccessful marriage is domestic violence done to any of the spouse from their in-laws or relatives. The harsh behavior, mental and physical torture, cruelty etc breaks the trust between the spouses and at last they get separated.
3. Control – This is the most common thing we can see in today’s world. Any of the spouse excercises unnecessary control over other spouse and wants to get things done in his/her way. So this is the reason for the weakening of bond between them.
4. Finances- If one spouse spends money at extreme and another is a saver, there are chances for conflict to arise.
5. Lack of commitment
6. Lack of communication – In today’s busy social and professional lifestyle, spouses rarely get time to communicate with each other.
Now we will discuss the matrimonial reliefs under Hindu Marriage Act
Keeping in view the high rate of marital discord, several matrimonial reliefs have been provided in the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955. They are-
1. Restitution of Conjugal Rights.
It is given in section 9 of Hindu marriage Act. In this if any of the spouse leaves the other without any reasonable reason, the aggrieved spouse may go to court for seeking a remedy.So in this there are three essentials which have to be proved by the aggrieved spouse.
The withdrawal by the respondent from the society of the petitioner
The withdrawal is without any reasonable or lawful ground
The court must get satisfied with the truth of the statement made in the petition
Now the remedy available under all personallaws are Section 9 of Hindu Marriage Act, Section 32-33 of Divorce Act, Section 36 of the Parsi Marriage Act and Section 22 of the Special Marriage Act.
2. Judicial Separation under HMA
It is provided under Section 10 of the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955. It is a platform of last resort before the legal breakup of the marriage, which is divorce. As soon as a decree for judicial separation is passed, a husband or a wife is under no compulsion to live with his/her spouse. The aggrieved party to the marriage may present a petition on any of the grounds stated in the provisions for divorce under Section 13 of the Hindu Marriage Act for a decree of judicial separation. If there is no cohabitation between the parties to the marriage for one year or more after the passing of the order for judicial separation, the parties then may apply for divorce.
3. Divorce under Hindu Law
Under Section 13 of HMA, 1955, the grounds of divorce can be Adultery which means the act of indulging in any sexual relationship outside marriage, Cruelty, Desertion which means if any of the spouses abandons his/her partner for at least two years ,the abandoned spouse can file a divorce case. Next one is Mental Disorder. If the spouse of the petitioner suffers from incurable mental disorder and insanity and the petitioner cannot expect to stay together then he/she can file case in the court. Other grounds for filing a divorce case is Leprosy, Venereal Diseases, Renunciation and Not Heard Alive
Further, Section 24 of the Hindu Marriage Act provision has also be made to help the victim spouse for maintenance pendency lite and expenses of proceedings. Section 25 of HMA provides for permanent alimony and maintenance to the spouse.
Other Matrimonial Reliefs under HMA are Voidable Marriages for nullity of legally irregular marriages given in Section 12 and Void Marriages given in Section 11.

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