SC rejects 89-yr-old’s plea to divorce 82-yr-old wife, Know details

SC rejected a plea by an 89-year-old man seeking divorce from his 82-year-old wife after he first applied to dissolve their marriage

New-Delhi: The Supreme Court on Tuesday rejected a plea by an 89-year-old man seeking divorce from his 82-year-old wife after he first applied to dissolve their marriage.

The order was passed by a bench of Justices Aniruddha Bose and Bela M Trivedi on October 10 and said that marriage is still considered to be a pious, spiritual and invaluable emotional life-net between husband and wife in Indian society.

The estranged couple have three children, two daughters and one son.

Nirmal Singh Panesar, 89, got married to Paramjit Kaur Panesar, 82, in 1963 and things turned out to be sour when the husband was posted by Indian Air Force in Madras in January 1984 and the wife did not join him. She preferred to stay initially with her in-laws and later with her son.

Nirmal first filed for divorce in 1996 on the grounds of cruelty and desertion, granted by a district court in 2000 but overturned later that year after an appeal by Paramjit.

The husband filed a petition seeking divorce on the grounds of cruelty and desertion. His wife did not even call upon him when he was admitted to an Army hospital following a heart attack and that she complained to his superiors against him to malign his image and these were the acts of ‘cruelty’, entitling him to a decree of divorce.

In his plea before the Supreme Court, the man argued that he has been living separately from his wife since 1996 and the marriage having been irretrievably broken down.

Meanwhile, the wife said that she does not want to die with the stigma of a “divorcee”, and had made all efforts to respect the sacred relationship between the parties all throughout and is still ready to look after her husband with the assistance of her son.

The Chandigarh District Court had granted them divorce in February 2000. But on an appeal by the wife, a single-judge bench of the Punjab and Haryana High Court reversed the order in December 2000. In February 2009, a division bench of the High Court confirmed the order of the single-judge bench, following which the husband approached the Supreme Court.

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