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The Legal Affair

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The Legal Affair

Let's talk Law

Rajasthan High Court Upholds Limited Use of DNA Paternity Tests in Matrimonial Proceedings

Rajasthan High Court Upholds Limited Use of DNA Paternity Tests in Matrimonial Proceedings

Factual Background 

In the case of X Versus Y S.B a writ petition filed by the husband who was the petitioner in this case seeking to overturn the Family Court’s decision to grant his application under Order 6 Rule 17 and Section 151 of the Code of Civil Procedure 1908 was accepted. In 2010, the couple were married, and the baby was born in 2018. In 2019, the wife had abandoned her husband’s home. The spouse has since requested a divorce on the grounds of cruelty under Section 13 of the Hindu Marriage Act of 1955. He wished to alter the application after the Deoxyribonucleic Acid Paternity Test Report showed that the spouse is not the father of the child, alleging that this was a development in the Family Court case. However, the Family Court denied it. The husband then submitted the current petition.

Issue 

  1. Can the woman be forced to provide her son’s DNA in a matrimonial proceeding to establish or refute paternity adultery?
  1. Should paternity be proven in court cases involving a husband and wife in order to establish any civil or marital wrongs related to adultery?

Analysis of Court order 

Justice Pushpendra Singh Bhati of the Rajasthan High Court’s single judge bench reaffirmed that, in order to protect the best interests of the child, DNA paternity tests cannot be accepted routinely and can only be accepted in exceptional circumstances. As a result, the Court denied the petition and ruled that the husband could not unfairly use a DNA test on the child to establish his wife’s adultery. 

According to the court, a child’s rights are being violated by the DNA test, which could influence his property rights, right to live a dignified life, right to privacy, and right to feel secure in and content with receiving love and attention from both parents. The Court further stated that as compared to the child’s rights to dignity and parentage, the agony of winning or losing a divorce battle among the contending spouses is significantly insignificant. The petition was dismissed by the court because it did not deem the case appropriate to award any remedy.