The Karnataka High Court granted divorce to a couple after it found that the husband had treated the wife like a ‘cash cow.’ In its recent judgment, a division bench of Justices Alok Aradhe and J M Khazi held that a husband treating his wife as a ‘cash cow’ amounts to cruelty.
The woman had submitted bank account transaction records and other documents to prove that she had transferred Rs 60 lakh to him over the years.
The bench said, ”it is evident that the respondent (husband) has treated the appellant as a cash cow and had a materialistic attitude towards the appellant. The Respondent had no emotional ties with the appellant. The attitude of the respondent in itself has caused mental agony and emotional trauma to the appellant which is sufficient to make out a ground of mental cruelty.” A Family Court refused to grant the divorce and rejected her application in 2020. The wife then challenged the lower court order in the HC. The high court bench set aside the lower court order saying, ”The Family Court has grossly erred in not appreciating the version of the appellant (wife) and it ought to have been appreciated that the testimony of the appellant was not even put to cross-examination.” The couple was married in 1999 in Chikkamagaluru. They had a child in 2001. The wife applied for divorce in 2017.
The wife submitted that the husband’s family was in financial distress ”which led to fights and arguments between parents, siblings, and children.” She took up a job in UAE to pay the family debt. She also purchased agricultural land in her husband’s name. But, he ”failed to be financially independent and instead of taking care of financial needs of the appellant was dependant on her.” She even set up a salon for him in UAE in 2012. But he returned to India in 2013. In the divorce petition in the lower court, the husband did not make an appearance and the case was decided ex parte. The lower court had said that the grounds of cruelty were not proved.