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Janaki Amma Krishnamma Vs. Raghava Panicker Sreedhara Panicker - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectFamily;Constitution
CourtKerala High Court
Decided On
Case NumberCivil Revn. No. 15 of 1956
Judge
Reported inAIR1957Ker94
ActsTravancore Ezhava Act, 1100 - Sections 9 and 11; ;Code of Civil Procedure (CPC) , 1908; Constitution of India - Articles 14 and 15
AppellantJanaki Amma Krishnamma
RespondentRaghava Panicker Sreedhara Panicker
Appellant Advocate M.N. Parameswaran Pillai, Adv.
Respondent Advocate S. Nilakanta Iyer, Adv.
DispositionPetition dismissed
Excerpt:
- .....is in favour of the wife, and it certainly does not lie in the mouth of the petitioner who has been thus favoured tocomplain against it even if it be, as is argued on her behalf but seems to us most doubtful, that the striking off of the entire section as unconstitutional would enable her to obtain a far higher sum than rs. 2,000 as compensation. that apart, it seems to us clear that the difference in the sums payable as compensation is founded on a reasonable classification an obvious, basis for the classification being that, as a rule, a husband has more means than a wife.4. a third contention taken in the court below namely that the provision in section 8 denying compensation in the event of change of religion is unconstitutional, is no longer pressed. the petitioner has not.....
Judgment:

Raman Nair, J.

1. We see no merits in this Revision Petition by an Ezhava wife against an order passed under Section 11 of the Travancore Ezhava Act, 3 of 1100, dissolving her marriage with the Respondent.

2. Two grounds are urged, both to our minds equally unsustainable. The first is that the order of dissolution was premature in that it was passed before the expiry of the period of 6 months prescribed in Section 11 and that it is therefore illegal. The petitioner's wife took notice of the petition for dissolution and entered appearance on 3-3-1955. It was only on 9-1-1956, more than nine months later, that the order of dissolution was passed, and hence it is clear that there was due observance of the provisions of Section 1.1.

It is nevertheless argued that the order was premature and it is said in support of this argument that the period from 27-5-1955 to 10-12-1955 when an enquiry which the trial Court had ordered into the grounds of the proposed dissolution (which order was against the provisions of Section 9 of the Act) was stayed by the High Court on a petition filed by the wife should have been excluded in computing the period of 6 months. The argument is on the face of it unsustainable. The period of six months in Section 11 is not a period of limitation but is, as stated by the petitioner's counsel himself, opportunity given for the purpose of repentance and reconciliation.

That opportunity was in no way affected by reason of the pendency of the Revision petition in the High Court or by the stay ordered by it, and it might even be said that these favoured rather than hindered a reconciliation. But, however that might be, there is no provision in the Act suspending the period once it has begun to run. Even if the contention of the learned counsel for the petitioner that during the period of the stay ordered by the High Court the parties could not have had the mental attitude necessary for reconciliation be accepted, we have never heard it said that it is competent for a Court to introduce provisions into a statute which are not there at all for the purpose of furthering what it conceives to be the purpose of the statute.

3. The second ground is that the Court below should have made a reference to this Court under Section 113 of the Civil Procedure Code in view of the contention raised on behalf of the wife that Section 9 of the Act should be struck off as offending against Articles 14 and 15 of the Constitution in that while it fixes the maximum compensation payable by a husband at Rs. 2,000/-, it fixes the maximum compensation payable by a wife at the lesser figure of Rs. 500.

It will be seen that such inequality or discrimination as there is in this provision is in favour of the wife, and it certainly does not lie in the mouth of the petitioner who has been thus favoured tocomplain against it even If it be, as is argued on her behalf but seems to us most doubtful, that the striking off of the entire section as unconstitutional would enable her to obtain a far higher sum than Rs. 2,000 as compensation. That apart, it seems to us clear that the difference in the sums payable as compensation is founded on a reasonable classification an obvious, basis for the classification being that, as a rule, a husband has more means than a Wife.

4. A third contention taken in the Court below namely that the provision in Section 8 denying compensation in the event of change of religion is unconstitutional, is no longer pressed. The petitioner has not changed her religion, and, in any case, the striking off of that provision would not affect the case.

5. We dismiss the petition with costs (Advocate's fee Rs. 30-0-0).


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