The Hyderabad High Court has cancelled an order passed by a family court which granted alimony to a woman who earned more than her husband.
The woman had demanded that her husband pay her Rs 10,000 per month, and was allotted Rs 4,000 per month as per the family court. She had told the family court that her husband accused her of infidelity only five days into their married life. Her husband is a lecturer who earns Rs 15,000 per month, according to his estranged wife.
However, the man has denied his wife’s statements. He said that he is not permanently employed and was only a guest lecturer who earns his living by giving tuitions.
He said that his wife had only lived with him for 2 days and had said that she was in love with someone else.
The Hyderabad High Court has said that the woman was drawing a salary of Rs 20,000 per month and was capable of looking after herself. However, if at any future point, she is not capable of looking after herself, the HC has ruled that she can then claim her maintenance.
Courts usually decide alimony on a case-by-case basis. The Supreme Court has said that the benchmark for the maintenance to be paid by a man to an estranged wife should be 25 per cent of his net salary.
“I applaud the Hyderabad HC decision since alimony should only be given to those who are financially down-trodden. In this case, I don’t see why the woman was even applying for an alimony when she know the financial situation of the husband. Upliftment through a reservation like alimony should be based on financial stability rather than gender,” says Poorvi Gupta, a journalist and Delhi University alumni.