The man says no to alimony, offers food, clothes to the separated wife; Punjab and Haryana HC say it's okay

CHANDIGARH: In what is probably the first such case in the country, the Punjab and Haryana High Court accepted a husband's request to provide food and clothing to his separated wife in the form of maintenance, rather than a fixed amount in the form of maintenance.

The issue concerns, where the husband had approached the HC in defiance of the order of a lower court ordering him to pay a fixed monthly maintenance to his wife. Defying the order, the husband said that before working in a company and that the company has been closed. His lawyer stated that, instead of making a fixed payment, the petitioner was willing to provide 20 kg of rice, 5 kg of sugar, 5 kg of pulses, 15 kg of wheat and 5 kg of pure ghee every month. He also offered to provide his estranged wife with a set of clothes every four months and two liters of milk each day.

Upon accepting the offer, Judge Raj Shekhar Atri of the HC, in his order issued on Wednesday, ordered the petitioner to provide the items mentioned to the defendant (wife) within three days from today. The judge also ordered the petitioner to settle the child support arrears and present a sworn statement in this regard at the next hearing date.

By postponing the matter for a hearing on July 25, Judge Atri ordered the husband to appear before this court on the next date.

In this case, the family court of the Bhiwani district had ordered the husband to pay a maintenance amount to the wife according to section 125 of the criminal procedure code. Aggravated by family court orders, the husband had challenged him before the HC.