The Hindu law, the legal obligation for

The word maintenance has a wide meaning. It is considered to be a personal obligation to maintain certain relations. Henceforth maintenance covers an ambit for the provision of food, clothing, residence, education, medical assistance and the treatment. According to Hindu law, the legal obligation for the maintenance of wife, minor sons, unmarried daughters and parents. There are two types of maintenance namely the pendent lite (interim maintenance) and the permanent maintenance.Maintenace of widowed daughter- in- law is mentioned under the section 19 of Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act wherein it mentions about the ways that she could receive maintenance provided that she is unable to maintain herself out of her income and she doesn’t get remarried.  Keywords: Husband, Income, Maintenance, Pendente lite, Widowed daughter-in-law.Introduction:                The word maintenance would mean providing means of food, clothing and shelter to the person in need in case of divorce obtained from one person in order to stabilize his livelihood. These are various acts wherein, it describes about the maintenance of wife, children that are provided by the husband or the vice versa. It lays down the grounds for maintenance. India being a secular country, personal laws are developed using the religious. Hence for each religion. The grounds of maintenance are different.      The law of maintenance and alimony may be discussed under the following two Interim maintenance and expenses of the proceedings(pendent lite) Permanent maintenance and alimony                           Under matrimonial statues the husband is required to pay for the maintenance of the wife during the pendency of proceeding in matrimonial causes as well as to pay her the expenses of the proceedings. The interim maintenance is payable from the date of the presentation of the petition until the dismissal of the suit or passing of the decree. The interim maintenance is intended to be made to meet the immediate needs of petitioner. Under the Hindu marriage act and the Parsi marriage and the divorce act interim maintenance can be claimed by the wife or the husband and it is called “Alimony Pendent Lite”.        The provision of permanent alimony and maintenance exists in all Indian matrimonial statues and it is substantially the same. The order for permanent maintenance can be awarded at the time of the passing of the decree in any matrimonial cause orAt any time subsequent to the passing of the decree in any matrimonial decree.Maintenance of the husband:                                           Usually the maintenance is given by the husband to his wife. But in section24 of Hindu marriage act of 1960, the provisions states that either the wife or the husband. When has no independent income sufficient to take care of themselves then in that case it may be on the either side of the husband or the wife to pay the expenses of  the proceedings. The income of the petitioner as well as the income of the respondent will be taken into account; thereby the court would award the maintenance which is considered to be reasonable. In case of section 25 –depicts on the permanent alimony wherein the parties either the husband or the wife must pay to applicant for her or his maintenance and support such gross amount or such monthly or periodical sum for a term, to regard with the respondent’s own income and other property. There are certain conditions to get maintenance:-If  the person has remarriedIn case of the wife, her chaste is questionable. In case of husband if had sexual intercourse with another woman.In case of divorce act of 1869, the petition can be instituted by a husband or a wife.Maintenance of a widowed daughter in law:-                       According to the adoptive and maintenance act of 1956, under the section 19, it describes about the maintenance of widowed daughter in law in which the woman was married before or after the commencement of the act, she shall be entitled to get maintenance after her husband’s death by her father in law. The following are the reasons wherein she couldn’t get maintenance.If she is unable to maintenance herself out of the income She doesn’t have any property of her own.If she is unable to receive maintenance from the estate of her husband or her father or mother                  The obligation for maintenance only arises when the husband has died. If the husband is a co sharer in the properties, then this provision can be invoked. In one case it shall not be enforceable if the father –in-law has the means to do so from coparcenary property in his possession out of which the daughter in law has not obtained any share and any such obligation shall cease on the remarriage of the daughter-in-law.    Case laws: Maintenance of husband:Sushila Viresh Chhadva v. Viresh Nagshi Chandra                        There is a strong possibility of the marriage being declared as a nullity is no ground for declining even the basic right that would be the right to claim interim alimony and the expenses of the litigation under the section of 24 in Hindu Marriage Act. Therefore the act provides option for either the wife or the husband to apply for interim maintenance for each other on the grounds that the husband must be differently able or in case of the wife she couldn’t sustain in her earnings and she must not be remarried. In this case one shouldn’t obstruct other spouse from obtaining maintenance for their livelihood.Sobbana v.Amar kant                    The Court has the power to allow maintenance pendente lite from the date of service of summons of the petition or in appeal even if the application for maintenance is made at a later stage. Maintenance of a widowed daughter in law: Lakshmi V.Sundaranama        So, in the case of a widow the section does not say that her claim of maintenance will arise only if she has no other means of maintenance. Moral duty of the father in law ripens into a legal obligation in the hands of the heirs of devisees.Vimlaben Ajithbhai Patel V. Vatslabeu A Shokbhai Patel         The property in the name of the mother- in- law can neither be a subject matter of attachment nor during the lifetime of the husband, is his personal liability to maintain his wife directed to be enforced against such property.Recent developments:Rani Sethi V.Sunil Sethi        In this case the petitioner (wife) has a substantial income from the business which was at our time started jointly by both the petitioner and the respondent. The very purpose of the section 24 of Hindu marriage act is to provide support to a spouse who has no independent source of income and is incapable of maintaining himself/herself.      The word “support” does not mean just the base subsistence. It means that the other spouse who has a no independent source of income is provided with such maintenance so as to live with a similar status as was enjoyed by them in their matrimonial home. The support or for the expenses of the proceedings must be provided with a reasonable must be provided with a reasonable sum that strikes equity between the spouses.         In this case the interim maintenance was awarded, on 4/3/2009.All arrears shall be cleared by the petitioner within a period of three months from today which shall be paid by the petitioner to the respondent (husband) in equal installments and the first installment shall be paid by the petitioner within 15days from that day.Smt.Chandana Guha Roy vs Goutam Guha Roy                 This revisional application passed by the learned Addl. District judge 5th Court, Alipore.The petitioner claimed for the maintenance under section 24 of Hindu marriage act 1955-pendente lite. The respondent husband was a holding a diploma in mechanical engineering and earned ten thousand rupees every month. Henceforth wife claim for three thousand per month as an alimony .The husband had also filed an application claiming damages from the wife since she took private tuitions and earned about five thousand per month.He claimed two thousand as maintenance. Few months after, the respondent was arrested due to some connection in a criminal case and was then released on bail. He is now unemployed and moving like a vagabond .After hearing the wife petitioner and the husband before the trial court the learned Trial Judge rejected both the petitions one filed by the petitioner wife and the other filed by the husband respondent. The husband couldn’t receive the maintenance because he is an able-bodied person.About an able bodied Husband:The High Court of Kerala recently quashed a husband’s claim for maintenance, observing that maintenance under Section 24 of the Hindu Marriage Act is to be paid to the husband only when he is able to prove any incapability or his handicap. The Bench comprising of Justice A.M. Shaffique and Justice K.Ramakrishnan further observed that in the absence of such circumstances, endowing maintenance on the husbands would promote “idleness” among them.The court heard the petition from a 24 year old woman from Kasaragod challenging the Family court’s order to pay maintenance of Rs.6000 per month to her husband .It was observed that the lower court failed to note that there was no evidence to support the contention that the husband was incapable of being employed or he was a handicap. Therefore it struck the order of the lower court and explained that if such petitions are entertained then this would lead to the idleness of the husbands, would promote to live of the salary of the wife. In Maintenance of widowed daughter in law:Venubai Wd/O Wasudeo Rambhad v. Laxman Lahanuj Rambhad                    The widowed daughter- in- law claim maintenance from her father- in- law against his self acquired estate in terms of section 19 of Hindu Adoptions and Maintenance Act 1956.The provision was only prospective in nature and did not take away any right of such widow already vested upon her before the commencement of this Act.                     The petitioner’s husband has expired on 7.8.1976 will after the Act came into force. It was further found that there was moral duty on father in law to maintain the widowed daughter- in- law and her heir out of the property he inherits or from self acquired property provided that she is not able to maintain herself. Mother- in -law cannot be fastened with legal liability to maintain daughter in law. Muslim father-in-law:                   The Calcutta High Court, on Friday, exempted a father-in-law from maintaining his son’s widow, opining that he was under no obligation to maintain her. The Court had been approached by one Ms. Shabnam Parveen, who had demanded maintenance from her father-in-law, contending that he was the one handling the family business after her husband’s death. Assessing her plea, Justice Md. Mumtaz Khan noted that as per Section 36 of the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, the provisions of the Act shall be in addition to, and not in derogation of the provisions of any other law for the time being in force. The Court opined that since both the parties are Muslim in the case at hand, it would be their personal law that would apply to them. It then ruled, “Section 36 of the PWDV Act, 2005 provides that the provisions of that Act shall be in addition to, and not in derogation of the provisions of any other law, for the time being in force. In the decision of Mrs. Nanadita Sarkar Nee Sen (Supra), the concept of Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act, 1956 was taken into consideration vis-a-vis the provisions of PWDV Act, 2005. In the case in hand both parties are Mohammedan and as such under the Muhamadan Law, opposite party no.2, being father-in-law, is under no obligation to provide maintain allowance to the widow of his son namely the petitioner.”Conclusion:          Henceforth there are many acts that provide maintenance for the dependents .It is divided based on the religion. One could not curtail one’s right to obtain maintenance provided that the grounds for obtaining the maintenance are met. In case of maintenance of husband wherein the husband is unemployed or the fact that he is differently abled person and the wife is well off on her own then in this case she could be asked to give maintenance to her husband. In case of a widowed daughter in law, she is also considered to be one of the dependents who could claim maintenance after the death of her husband and provided so that she hasn’t got remarried .In this the judgments has been differed in respect to different religions.