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Hindus get 90 days to appeal divorce decree: Family Court

  • A warring Hindu couple now has 90 days, not 30, to file an appeal against a divorce decree granted by a family court, a full bench of the Bombay high court has held.

    The court ruling lays to rest divided verdicts, and means that a Hindu man or woman would now have to wait three months after a divorce decree to remarry. Provided, of course, that within this time, the losing spouse has not already challenged the dissolution of marriage and the appeal is pending.
     

    The three-judge bench comprising Justices Naresh Patel, R D Dhanuka and Sadhana Jadhav held that time to file an appeal has to read harmoniously when provisions in two different laws were different and conflicting. The two different laws here were the Hindu Marriage Act(HMA) of 1955, which provided for 90 days to file an appeal, as amended in 2003, and the Family Courts Act of 1984 that provides only 30 days.
     

    In 2014, the HC had, in a divorce appeal filed in 2013, referred to the larger bench the issue of fixing the appeal deadline, after different benches had earlier given conflicting findings on which law would prevail. The bench held that the Family Courts Act was a procedural law and that its provisions were not intended to "impliedly" repeal provisions of the HMA.

    The court ruling lays to rest divided verdicts, and means that a Hindu man or woman would now have to wait three months after a divorce decree to remarry. Provided, of course, that within this time, the losing spouse has not already challenged the dissolution of marriage and the appeal is pending.
     

    OUR TAKE

    It is easy to take a harsh decision and break the marriage vows. But it is even more difficult together back together with the same amount of dedication and love. The decision has been made in the correct decision. One needs to think such decisions through before taking any steps. For now, the decision is in the best interest of both the wife and husband.


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