Interim Maintenance



  • The object of the maintenance proceedings is not to punish a person for his past neglect, but to prevent vagrancy by compelling those who can provide support to those who are unable to support themselves and who have a moral claim to support. The phrase "unable to maintain herself" in the instant case would mean that means available to the deserted wife while she was living with her husband and would not take within itself the efforts made by the wife after desertion to survive somehow.............the wife should be in a position to maintain standard of living which is neither luxurious nor penurious but what is consistent with status of a family. The expression "unable to maintain herself" does not mean that the wife must be absolutely destitute before she can apply for maintenance under Section 125 Cr.P.C.

               Chaturbhuj vs Sita Bai; SC on 27 November, 2007

               Appeal (crl.) 1627 of 2007


  • Consideration as to the ultimate outcome of the main proceeding after regular trial would be wholly alien to assess the need or necessity for awarding interim maintenance, as long as the marriage, the dissolution of which has been sought, cannot be disputed, and the marital relationship of husband and wife subsisted. As noticed earlier, the relevant statutory consideration being only that either of the party, who was the petitioner in the application under Section 24 of the Act, has no independent income sufficient for her or his support, for the grant of interim maintenance, the same has to be granted and the discretion thereafter left with the court, in our view, is only with reference to reasonableness of the amount that could be awarded and not to impose any condition, which has self-defeating consequence.

                        Amarjit Kaur vs Harbhajan Singh And Anr.

                        2003 (1) AWC 344 SC, (2003) 2 CALLT 23 SC


  • considering the reality of the situation to the effect that the appellant is receiving a sum of about Rs.9000/- in hand after deduction of various amounts, including the instalments towards repayment of the home loan, we are of the view that the amount as awarded by way of interim maintenance is on the high side.

      Bhushan Kumar Meen Vs. Mansi Meen @ Harpreet Kaur;

      SC on 28 April, 2009; CRIMINAL APPEAL No. 879 OF 2009


In a Case of Maintenance

  • As the legal right of the second wife to claim maintenance under the Act and its quantum are hotly contested issues in the main case, we refrain from expressing any opinion on merit of the claims and contentions of the parties. For the purpose of fixing appropriate amount of interim maintenance, we may assume that the financial position of husband is such that he can easily pay a sum of Rs.1,500/- per month as interim maintenance without disturbing the right of separate residence provided to the wife at the second floor of the husband's premises.

                        Narinder Pal Kaur Chawla vs Manjeet Singh Chawla  SC on 21 April, 2004


In a case of maintenance u/s 18 of Hindu Adoption & Maintenance Act

  • The scheme of Section 18 of Hindu Adoption & Maintenance Act, therefore, confers a general right on the wife to claim maintenance. This right continues and is enforceable even during the pendency of the suit as she has got to be maintained by the husband even during the pendency of the suit and in that view of the matter the court not only can pass an order for interim maintenance but, in my view should pass such an order where the relationship of husband and wife between the parties is undisputed, as that by itself establishes a prima facie case for grant of interim maintenance.

                        Baliram Ram vs Radhika Devi And Ors.

                        AIR 1980 Pat 67

In Appeal against ex-parte decree of divorce

  • Section 24 thus provides that in any proceeding under the Act, the spouse who has no independent income sufficient for her or his support may apply to the court to direct the respondent to pay the monthly maintenance as the court may think reasonable, regard being had to the petitioner's own income and the income of the respondent. The very language in which Section is couched indicates that wide discretion has been conferred on the court in the matter of an order for interim maintenance. Although the discretion conferred on the court is wide, the Section provides guideline inasmuch as while fixing the interim maintenance the court has to give due regard to the income of the respondent and the petitioner's own income. In other words, in the matter of making an order for interim maintenance, the discretion of the court must be guided by the criterion provided in the Section, namely, the means of the parties and also after taking into account incidental and other relevant factors like social status; the background from which both the parties come from and the economical dependence of the petitioner. Since an order for interim maintenance by its very nature is temporary, a detailed and elaborate exercise by the court may not be necessary, but, at the same time, the court has got to take all the relevant factors into account and arrive at a proper amount having regard to the factors which are mentioned in the statute.

                        Neeta Rakesh Jain Vs. Rakesh Jeetmal Jain; SC on 20 July, 2010

                              CIVIL APPEAL NO. 5660 OF 2010


In a Partition Suit

  • In the instant case, the position is absolutely alike as was the position in the case reported in 5 Pat LT 560 = (AIR 1924 Pat 69) (supra) -- The plaintiff opposite party wants a share in the family estate and before her right has been determined, she wants a share to be given to her. Such a prayer could not be allowed. Provisions of Section 151 can be of no help in such a matter. I must, therefore, hold accepting the contention raised on behalf of the petitioners that order dated the 7th of June, 1962, passed in the aforesaid title suit was without jurisdiction and the grant of interim maintenance cannot be upheld.

                        Ramji Gir And Ors. vs Elaichi Devi on 1 February, 1974

                        AIR 1974 Pat 280

In Divorce Case

  • It will be evident from the impugned order that the Court below in computing the earning of the petitioner has taken into account the money deposited by the petitioner (the wife) after selling her ornaments. If the Court, according to the aforesaid judgment, in the case of Radhikabai (supra), cannot rely on the customary ornaments for the purpose of computing income of the wife, I do not understand as to how the amount deposited by the petitioner (the wife) after sale of such ornaments can be taken into account to compute the income of the petitioner (the wife). It is to be taken into note that the petitioner sold the ornaments to save herself and her four daughters from starvation.

                        Indu Singh vs Dr. Ranjeet Singh; Patna HC on 14 July, 1995

                        I (1997) DMC 441