False 498A and other cases against me
I am an Indian citizen residing in USA for last 8 years on work visa. Last year, I got married to a Delhi based girl in India and we came back to USA together. Due to some irrevocable differences, Ms. Tina came back to India in Dec. last year. Before leaving, I served her subpoena notice for Divorce and I got ex-parte divorce in USA in January this year after one year of marriage. Now, my ex-wife is trying to file false cases against me under IPC sections 498a, 406, 34 and asking for Rs. 65 lacs in cash. During marriage, I didn't take a single penny, paisa as dowry still I am being harassed on dowry charges. As I have been living a comfortable life in USA, I never asked for anything even after marriage. Rather, I gave Rs. 3 lacs to Ms. Tina on her repeated insistence last year. Please suggest the possible solution to end these false cases? The Police IO is in the process of filing a Charge sheet in the court under the above sections. Please guide with options for me: -
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From the facts put forward by you, since you were married in Delhi, I believe that the marriage was also registered in India. Therefore, this marriage is bound by Indian laws. Even if you obtain ex parte divorce in USA, that decree is not valid in India. Therefore according to the Indian jurisprudence, you are still legally married with your wife.
Moreover, your wife has a legal right to claim maintenance from you because of the very reason that she is your wife (Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act, 1956). Even if you are divorced, the wife can seek maintenance from the husband. This is also applicable to the Muslim personal laws as well (Muslim Women (Protection of Right on Divorce) Act, 1986). The amount however has to be determined by the Court depending upon the income of the husband. Therefore, your wife can claim the sum of money from you. Whether you had taken dowry or not during your marriage is irrelevant in this case.
The charges pressed upon you under the IPC may be prima facie false, but it is on the Police to decide by carrying out proper investigations. However, you can challenge these false charges in the Court. Personally, I feel that §.34 of the IPC cannot be applied here as there is no such common intention as this between you and your wife. For common intention there has to be more than one person.
So your options are to freshly apply for divorce in India and talk to your wife and get a divorce by mutual consent. Even if your wife does not want divorce by mutual consent, apply for divorce in the Court. On receiving the divorce application, the Court will summon your wife. If after repeated summoning, your wife does not turn up, the court may pass an divorce order ex parte. Then, the divorce order will be a valid one. Otherwise, if she files a case against you in the Court, you will have to defend your case in the Court itself.
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