A civil court order obtained by an individual to evict his wife from house could not be executed if the woman had invoked the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005 and asserted her right of residence by obtaining order from a criminal court, Madras High Court Bench here said.

Justice G. Rajasuria made the observation while dismissing a civil revision petition filed by a Muslim woman challenging the refusal of a District Munsif in Tiruchendur to stay the trial in a civil suit filed by her husband to declare him as the sole owner of the property and to evict his wife forthwith. The Munsif had held that Section 10 of the Code of Civil Procedure could not be invoked for staying the trial.

However, attacking the Munsif’s order, the petitioner contended that the trial court had failed to appreciate the fact that her husband had filed the suit with the sole intention of thwarting the proceedings in two cases filed by her, one seeking monthly maintenance and another under the 2005 Act.

Not in agreement with the petitioner’s contention, Mr. Justice Rajasuria said that the Munsif had rightly dismissed her plea to stay the trial. Nevertheless, he observed that after the conclusion of the trial, the Munsif cannot execute the eviction order if a ‘residence order’ obtained by the woman under the 2005 enactment was in operation at that time.