In a Hindu marriage, a decree for divorce can be sought based on specific grounds such as adultery, polygamy, renunciation, conversion by a spouse and so on. However, many legal problems are not just about Hindu divorce law. There are so many legal questions about adoption, maintenance and inheritance that Hindu individuals or families face often.
Hindu marriage is a sacrament that binds a couple to one another and it is meant to last a lifetime. Hindu law lists specific grounds that enable a spouse to file for divorce.
In India, the birth of a son is considered to be essential in family life, particularly among Hindu families. Female babies and girl foeticide have taken place since time immemorial. Religious and caste based faiths have lowered the status of the girl child in India, even among well-to-do, educated Indian families.
On 16th February 2010, a real life story found its way to the Supreme Court. By seeking justice before the country's apex court, a domestic violence victim filed a writ of habeas corpus seeking her daughter to be produced before the court. She alleges that her husband sold off their daughter for prostitution.
This domestic violence victim has revealed shocking facts that she had not reported despite several years of physical and mental abuse by her husband. However, in her present petition, she does not press any domestic violence charges although she has been subject to years of domestic abuse.
As all marriages are based on the foundation of trust, does concealment of a pre-marriage ailment amount to fraud?
Green Card by Marriage Immigration Cases
In the US, for example, frauds pertain mostly to obtaining green card by marriage or marriage immigration cases, as they are popularly called. In India, concealment as a ground for divorce is valid if it amounts to fraud.
Marriage is not merely about the joining of hearts, as we like to call it, but it involves a more serious dimension: the legal sanction for sexual intercourse between the couple who have married each other. The Indian courts have held that even transient penetration does not amount to consummation of the marriage.
Assisted reproductive technology or ART as it is termed refers to any medical technique that enables the creation of a pregnancy by means other than natural reproduction through sexual intercourse.
Although the term 'ART' sounds contemporary, the actual practice of artificial insemination as an effective means to cure infertility dates back to the period when the wife of King Henry IV of Castile had to undergo in order to produce royal heirs. With the passage of time and advancement of technology, this became a thriving industry.
Legal proceedings that are held privately are referred to as 'in camera proceedings.'
Why Do We Have In Camera Proceedings?
In certain cases such as rape or sodomy cases, the details of a case may be so unpleasant that a judge may seek removal of women and children from being present to hear the case. When a case is conducted through in camera proceedings, it is not permissible to publish a report on it and if that is done, it can result in contempt of Court.
The court must be convinced that securing justice is doubtful without in camera proceedings as administering justice is the court's most important function and anything that obstructs this function must be addressed at once and without any delay whatsoever.
For any marriage to be legally valid, consent is an essential ingredient. If the court is satisfied that one of the parties to the marriage did not give consent or was not of sound mind to give consent with a clear understanding of what marriage entails, the marriage may be annulled on the ground that one of the spouses was not of sound mind at the time of the marriage.
In modern Indian law, the term 'fraud' has been given a wider interpretation. Mere statements alleging fraud in the pleadings is not sufficient to establish a presumption of fraud in matrimonial law. Section 19 of the Indian Divorce Act contemplates fraud as a ground for divorce but the term has a broad scope.