Madras HC asks man to vacate house after wife complains of harassment

The wife was free to approach the Family Court to obtain necessary orders to evict the man if he does not leave on his own within a fortnight.

N ChithraUpdated: Wednesday, August 17, 2022, 07:34 PM IST
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Madras HC | Photo: Representative Image

The Madras High Court, in a rare order, on Wednesday directed a man to vacate his house within two weeks after his advocate-wife, who was estranged, complained of physical abuse in front of her minor children. "If the man, who runs a business unit, fails to vacate within the stipulated time period, the police would have to step in to evict him from his house," ruled the HC.

The order was passed by Justice R N Manjula on a petition filed by the estranged wife who claimed the man manhandled and abused her in the presence of their minor children. The wife was free to approach the Family Court to obtain necessary orders to evict the man if he does not leave on his own within a fortnight.

“If the husband has got an alternative accommodation, it is fine. He can be asked to accommodate himself in that alternative premises. If he does not have any other accommodation, it is up to him to secure alternative accommodation,” the judge said.

The court agreed with the woman’s counsel that if evicting the husband from the matrimonial home was the only way to ensure domestic peace, courts should not hesitate to pass such orders irrespective of whether he had or did not have any other accommodation of his own.

Originally the woman had filed a divorce petition in the Family Court in 2019. Two years later, she filed a sub-application seeking direction from her husband to move out of her matrimonial home in the best interest of their children. The Family Court had disposed of the sub-application with a direction to the husband not to disturb the peaceful enjoyment of the matrimonial home by the estranged wife. The woman preferred to appeal in the High Court saying her estranged husband had turned aggressive and wanted him evicted.

The High Court said, “A relief for a person who fears an impending atom bomb would be to remove the bomb from his/her vicinity...Protection orders are generally given to ensure the peaceful movement of a woman within her domestic sphere. When a woman fears the presence of her husband and screams, the courts cannot be indifferent by just directing the husband that he should not harass the wife, while allowing him to reside in the same house.”

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