Man gets 3 months jail for concealing income

The Delhi High Court has sentenced a man to three months simple imprisonment for acting ‘oversmart’ with the court by suppressing his true income with an intent to evade compliance of the orders passed by the courts asking him to pay maintenance to his estranged wife.

A Bench of Justice Vipin Sanghi and Justice Jasmeet Singh was miffed at the man, who did not come clean despite granting repeated opportunities by the court.

“The conduct of the respondent [man]... shows that he has tried to act oversmart with the court by concealing his true income and expenditure, and the channels into which his incomes are flowing, and the manner in which they have been utilised,” the Bench said.

The estranged wife had filed a contempt petition before the High Court after her husband failed to comply with a December last year order of a Family Court here ordering him to pay ₹35,000 per month as an interim maintenance till the divorce case was settled. They got married in November 2013 and later filed for divorce in April 2018.

The High Court, in February this year, further ordered the husband to comply with the interim maintenance order passed by the Family Court.

Deliberate violation

While hearing the contempt petition filed by the woman, the Bench observed that the man was guilty of intentionally and deliberately violating and not complying with the order passed by the Family Court and the High Court.

It added, “If such action is permitted, it will lead to anarchy and the rule of law would become a casualty. The orders of the courts would be taken lightly and breached at the own will of the individual concerned”.

The court, which also imposed a penalty of ₹2,000 on the man, noted that mere imposition of a fine would not meet the ends of justice, and that a sentence of imprisonment was necessary considering the fact that the arrears owed by him are far in excess of the fine imposed, and he has deliberately, wilfully, intentionally and defiantly disobeyed the directions issued to him.

The Bench, however, said if the man exhibits his apology by complying with the orders passed by the courts, makes payment of entire arrears of maintenance within two weeks, undertakes to continue to pay the same during pendency of divorce case and tenders an unconditional apology to the court, it will consider recalling the punishment of him undergoing simple imprisonment.

“However, in case, he does not comply with this direction in the next two weeks, he is directed to surrender before the Jail Superintendent, Central Jail, Tihar, on December 09, 2021,” the court ordered.

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Printable version | Jan 22, 2022 7:47:34 PM |

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