It has been held by the Delhi High Court that if a case is at the stage of assessing the interim maintenance under section 125 of Criminal Procedure Code, the court must only form a prima facie opinion. After hearing the review petition by Justice Sanjeev Sachdeva, it was held by him that both the trial Court and the Appellate courts made a mistake in placing the burden of proof on the petitioner and seeking the details of the business contracts of the respondent.
In the said case, the petitioner was turned out of her house by the in-laws by saying that her family had failed to provide the dowry and a car on her marriage. The respondent had filed a petition of Divorce which is still pending in the court. It was then the petitioner has filed the subject petition under the Protection of Women under Domestic Violence Act, 2005. After assessing the income of the respondent, which turned out to be Rs. 30,000, the court ordered to provide maintenance of Rs. 10,000 to the petitioner every month. The Appellate Court has also given the same Judgement. So, the petitioner has sought the enhancement of the amount of maintenance to Rs 40,000 by stating that the respondent has several other businesses through which he has the turnover of around one Crore with nearly 10 employees.
Justice Sachdeva noted that the respondent had not been truthful to the court. Hence, the bench enhanced the maintenance to Rs. 30,000, and directed the respondent to clear the arrears of payment in three equal instalments. It has also been clarified that the above assessment is prima facie.
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