Relief Against Third Party Can’t Be Claimed In Proceedings Between Husband & Wife Under Hindu Marriage Act : Supreme Court

The Supreme Court has held that in a proceedings under the Hindu Marriage Act between a husband and a wife, a relief against a third party cannot be claimed.

The Court held so while rejecting a wife’s plea to seek a declaration that the alleged marriage between her husband and another woman was void. “Under the provisions of the Hindu Marriage Act, the relief of divorce, judicial separation etc. can be between the husband and the wife only and cannot extend to the third party. Therefore, by virtue of Section 23A of the Hindu Marriage Act, it is not open for the appellant herein – original defendant to seek declaration to the effect that the marriage between the respondent – original plaintiff and the third party is void. No relief can be prayed by way of counter claim even against the son born out of the alleged wedlock between the respondent – original plaintiff and the third party”, the Court stated. A bench of Justices M.R.Shah and A.S.Bopanna made the observation in a judgement Nitaben Dinesh Patel vs Dinesh Dahyabhai Patel. The judgement authored by Justice M.R.Shah further held that if some facts have come to the knowledge subsequent to the commencement of trial an application for amendment of written statement can be allowed even after the trial has commenced.

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