Delhi High Court restrain NRI from seeking divorce in USA- Anti suit Injunction granted.
The Delhi high court has come to the rescue of a woman allegedly deserted by her husband who has filed for divorce in the US.
In a recent ex-parte order, Justice Mukta Gupta restrained the husband from proceeding with the divorce petition filed in a Texas court. She took into account that the couple had tied the knot in India and now the woman doesn’t possess a valid visa to travel to the US and contest the divorce plea.
“The balance of convenience lies in favour of the wife and if injunction isn’t granted, she will suffer irreparable loss,” Justice Gupta said
HC accepted the argument of the woman’s lawyer, Prabhjit Jauhar, that since they were married in India in accordance with Hindu Marriage Act, 1955, their marriage could only be dissolved under the provisions of the Act. He further said the US court has no jurisdiction to resolve the marriage.
IN THE HIGH COURT OF DELHI AT NEW DELHI
NIDHI PRAKASH ….. Plaintiff
Through: Mr. Prabjit Jauhar and Ms. Anupama Kaul, Advocates.
RAJNEESH VARMA ….. Defendant
HON’BLE MS. JUSTICE MUKTA GUPTA
O R D E R
I.A. No. 19497/2013 (Exemption)
Allowed, subject all just exceptions.
I.A. No. 19496/2013 (Exemption)
Allowed, subject to the Plaintiff filing the original documents
before admission/denial of the documents.
Application is disposed of.
Plaint be registered as a suit.
Issue summons in the suit to the Defendant on the Plaintiff taking
steps through Registered AD, Courier and email, returnable on 10th
CS(OS) 2386/2013 Page 1 of 4
I.A. No. 19494/2013 (u/Order XXXIX Rule 1 and 2 CPC) and I.A. No.
19495/2013 (u/Sections 20, 23 and 26 of Domestic Violence Act)
Issue notice to the Defendant on the Plaintiff taking steps through
Registered AD, Courier and email, returnable on 10th January, 2014.
The case of Plaintiff is that the parties got married on 25th June,
12 in India as per the Hindu Rites and Customs and left for USA on 4th
July, 2012. The parties were residing in a rental accommodation at 1114,
1200, South Dairy Ashford 77077, Houston, Texas. It is stated that the
Defendant had been treating the Plaintiff with cruelty. The Defendant
and his family members also raised demands from the Plaintiff?s parents
pursuant to which 5,000/- USD were transferred into the account of the
Defendant. The Defendant booked the tickets of the Plaintiff to India on
27th June, 2013 with return ticket for 22nd August, 2013 to Houston back.
It was represented to the Plaintiff by the Defendant and his family
members that after spending some time with her parents and parents of the
Defendant at Bangalore, the Plaintiff would come back to USA in August,
2013 and the Defendant would also visit India during the said period for
two weeks as the Defendant?s sister was also likely to deliver the second
child. It was never CS(OS) 2386/2013
Page of 4 disclosed to the Plaintiff that the Defendant had
applied for his green card and that the name of the Plaintiff had not
been included in the green card petition as spouse. The Plaintiff was on
H4 dependant visa when she went to USA after marriage and thus after
obtaining the green card by the Defendant, the work permit visa of the
Defendant would cease to operate and thus the visa of the Plaintiff
enabling her to stay in USA would also automatically cease to operate.
Since July, 2013, the Plaintiff is residing at New Delhi with her
parents. The Defendant wrote emails to the Plaintiff stating that her
coming to Texas would have no effect as he wanted to separate. The
Defendant has filed the divorce petition in the Harris County Court,
Texas on the ground that the marriage has become unsupportable on account
of discord or conflict of personality and has prayed that the divorce be
granted to the Defendant. The Plaintiff has not submitted to the
jurisdiction of the Harris County Court, Texas till date nor has filed
any written statement. Thus the Plaintiff seeks an ad-interim ex-parte
anti suit injunction against the Defendant.
The parties were married in India as per the Hindu Marriage Act,
1955. The Plaintiff in the absence of a valid visa is not in a position
to CS(OS) 2386/2013 Page 3 of
4 travel to USA. Further the Court at Texas is a forum non-convenience
to the Plaintiff. In view thereof, I am of the considered opinion that
the Plaintiff has made out a prima facie case in her favour for grant of
ad-interim ex-parte anti suit injunction. The balance of convenience
also lies in favour of the Plaintiff and in case no injunction is
granted, she will suffer irreparable loss. Consequently the Defendant,
his attorney, representatives etc. are restrained from further proceeding
with the petition filed before the Court of Harris County, Texas in Court
File No. 201363296 till the next date of hearing.
Compliance under Order XXXIX Rule 3 CPC be made within one week.
MUKTA GUPTA, J.