Written by Vineeta Pandey
Law minister proposes: Amendment in law to make divorce cases time-bound
Bangalore: The 3,000-odd couples who file for divorce in Bangalore every year may soon heave a sigh of relief. The endless wait these couples bear before a divorce decree, or for a decision in a child custody battle, may be soon cut short. Union law minister M Veerappa Moily has mooted a proposal to set up more family courts to ensure speedy disposal of matrimonial cases.
Moily said that the government may even consider an amendment in the law to make disposal of divorce and custody cases time-bound. He said that family courts will be given a target of winding up such cases within a year of being filed. The minister believes that litigating couples should be freed fast from a broken marriage.
“There is no need for divorce cases to drag on for years when the marriage has actually broken down. Similarly, the children’s custody cases must be decided in a time-bound manner so that there is no uncertainty over their future,” Moily said.
It is estimated that on an average 3,000 cases of divorce are filed in Bangalore, 7,500 in Mumbai and 9,000 in Delhi every year. In fact, the Chief Justice of India had recently said that family and matrimonial disputes are responsible for adding the burden of backlog of cases in courts.
The Law Commission has recently suggested making “irretrievably broken down marriage” a ground for divorce. However, Moily said that all effort should be first made to save a marriage.
“Typically, disposal of a divorce case takes seven to nine years. However, we have seen cases where judges have rejected divorce after 14, 15 or 17 years. This is unacceptable. Judges have no right to deny a peaceful life to litigants,” said Virag Dhulia of Save India Family Foundation (SIFF).