Divorce Now Possible Without 6-Month Wait: Supreme Court Invokes Special Powers

The Supreme Court has given a big decision regarding divorce. According to the Supreme Court, it can immediately dissolve a marriage on the grounds of “irretrievable breakdown of marriage” using the powers under Article 142. 

The Supreme Court on Monday ruled that it can exercise its prerogatives under Article 142 of the Constitution to dissolve a marriage on the ground of irreconcilable rift between the spouses. 

A five-judge bench headed by Justice SK Kaul said, “We, as per our findings, have held that it is possible for this court to dissolve a married relationship on the ground of irreparability. It will not be in violation of specific or basic principles of government policy”

The bench also includes Justice Sanjiv Khanna, Justice AS Oka, Justice Vikramnath and Justice JK Maheshwari.

On behalf of the bench, Justice Khanna, while giving the verdict, said, “We have said that a period of six months can be given on the basis of the requirements and conditions mentioned in the two decisions of this court.”

The bench had reserved its decision on September 29, 2022. The court, while reserving its order, had said that social change takes ‘some time’ and sometimes it is easier to bring a law. But it is difficult to persuade the society to change with it. During the hearing, the court had acknowledged the role of a family in marriage in India.

The bench was also considering whether its comprehensive powers under Article 142 are in any way curtailed in a scenario where, in the opinion of a court, the marital relationship has broken down in such a way that there is no likelihood of reunification but One of the parties is creating obstruction in the divorce.

In fact, Article 142 of the Constitution deals with issuing orders of the Supreme Court to do “complete justice” in any matter pending before the court.  

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