In the case of Annadurai v Jaya, The husband is the petitioner. The petitioner’s mother-in-law is the respondent. In 1991, the petitioner got married Saraswathi, the respondent’s daughter. They split up as a result of miscommunication. By submitting a divorce petition in accordance with Section 13 (1)(i)(b) of the Hindu Marriage Act, the petitioner’s husband. The trial court proposed a 7,500 Rupees maintenance payment. Their Wife Saraswathi claimed Rs. 6,37,500 in maintenance arrears in the plea. In the midst of a petition, the wife Saraswathi passed away on June 5, 2021. After that, her mother filed a petition to include her as a petitioner and obtain permission to reclaim Rs. 6,22,500 in unpaid maintenance.
The contention from the Parties
The petitioner claimed that because his wife Saraswathi had passed away, his wife had a personal right to maintenance. No cause of action has persisted since she passed away, putting an end to that right. Her mother is not able to continue the proceedings and is not allowed to demand back. As a result, the respondent’s mother-in-law could not be impleaded to pay the arrears of maintenance in place of the respondent’s wife Saraswathi.
According to the defendant, the petitioner’s ex-wife’s husband is not her rightful heir according to the divorce judgement. The marriage is broken because the marriage is dissolved, changing the status of the spouses to ex-husband and ex-wife as a result of the divorce decision. Therefore, in the absence of sons and daughters, the mother is a successor to her deceased daughter under the Hindu Succession Act, Section 15(i)(c). There is no justification to interfere with the impugned ruling because the respondent’s mother-in-law is a legitimate heir to her deceased daughter and is qualified to receive the support arrears until her death.
Conclusion of the Court
A single madras bench HC After his divorced wife passed away while the case was being litigated, Justice V Sivagnanam’s court ordered his mother-in-law to recover the maintenance arrears totalling 6.2 lakh rupees. The Court ruled that arrears of support were to be regarded as movable and immovable property that one had obtained by a decree when sub-sections 1 and 2 of Section 14 of the Hindu Succession Act were read together. According to Hindu Succession Act Section 15(1)(c), the mother is entitled to the daughter’s property, and therefore revision petition filed by the petitioner is dismissed.
Case Name – Annadurai v Jaya Crl.R.C.No.291 of 2022