The Division bench of Justice Vijaya Kapse Tahilramani and Justice Anil Menon of the Bombay High Court rejected a US based NRI’s plea that a Pune court could not entertain the divorce petition by his wife as she was also a US citizen and both were therefore Non-Resident Indians.
He had migrated to the US in 1994 and his wife moved in 2004 after their marriage in 2002. In 2012 the wife went to Pune where her family stays for her sister’s wedding and did not return and filed a divorce petition that very year in a Pune Court.
According to the High Court the Hindu Marriage Act can be applied which allows a woman to file the petition before a court where she resides. The intention to live in Pune could be seen by the fact that she had admitted her child in a school there.
The husband had produced a US court’s order which directed her to return to the US with their son. However according to the HC there was an intention to change the domicile from the US to India at least for a considerable time.
Further, the HC laid importance on the fact that the Husband had bought property in his name in India which indicates that he had an intention to hold the property and most likely return to India. The HC also directed the family court not to hear the wife’s plea for divorce for six weeks so that the husband can approach the Supreme Court, through his lawyers.