• Calling names can be grounds for divorce : Delhi High Court

    March 28, 2016

    The Delhi High Court has put aside and dismissed a woman's plea challenging a special court order on passing a divorce decree in favor of her husband, who had alleged that she had both physically and mentally abused him and called him names.

    Justice Vipin Sanghi in his ruling noted the following :

    "The other incidents established on record by the respondent/husband, by themselves, constitute sufficient evidence of the respondent being subjected to cruelty by the appellant. The calling of names and hurling of abuses such as 'Hathi', 'Mota Hathi' and 'Mota Elephant' by the appellant in respect of her husband - even if he was overweight, is bound to strike at his self respect and self esteem,"

    The case is not a recent one and has been doing the rounds of the court for the past one decade. The court has been giving rulings in the favor of both the parties and has finally given the case to the husband. According to the evidences and the statements given out by the husband, he was unable to reduce weight even after being on various diets. The fact that he was obese was put against him when the wife started to call him names like “mota hathi” and ”hathi”. Unable to take the trauma projected towards him, he decided to take the matter to court and file for divorce. According to the reports filed and the evidences, the wife also had a sour relationship with her in-laws and this also had a part in her being cruel towards the husband. Often the wife used to mock the husband with respect to his weight and also his inability to satisfy her sexual needs. The situation also went out of hand when the wife threatened to put herself on fire and then blame the husband and his family and put them in a dowry case.

    The wife had pleaded not guilty and had, in an earlier statement through her lawyer. The woman had contended the family court relied on “vague and non-specific” allegations while granting the divorce. She said that the events described by the husband were incorrect as he could not mention the exact dates , time or location of the happenings of the events. The Court in its reply stated that since the matter related to such grave acts of harassment and has in any case destroyed the self esteem of the husband, it is not necessary for him to take note of these details. “When two parties are in a marital relationship, neither is expected to maintain a logbook and note down therein each and every instance of matrimonial offence committed by the other,” justice Sanghi said.

    “Such events are clearly destructive of the matrimonial bond and would naturally give rise to a bonafide and genuine belief and apprehension in the mind of the respondent (husband) that it is not safe for him to peacefully and mentally continue the relationship…” the HC stated.


    The cruelty one faces when he/she is subjected to mental trauma or calling of names can be pretty hug. As in this case, the husband has been fighting the case for almost a decade against the horrendous acts of his wife. The wife has been destroying the sacred sacrament of matrimony and the Court is completely right in taking up the matter of the husband and providing him solace. There has been numerous cases of such nature where the wife blackmails the husband in greed of property and other matters. This needs to stop. The matrimonial bond is not to be played around with. The participants in a marriage have to respect the feelings of one another and if he/she does not, then the person does not deserve any mercy from the law.

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