A man is liable to provide maintenance to his daughter living with his estranged partner,even after the daughter turns an adult,a city court has ruled. Noting that the provision of maintenance under the Domestic Violence Act does not differentiate between adult and minor dependent,Additional Sessions Judge Madhu Jain refused to set aside the previous order of a metropolitan magistrate directing the man to pay a maintenance amount of Rs 2,000 to his daughter under the provisions of the Act.
The courts observations came after one Balwinder Singh challenged the magistrates order on the ground that his daughter had attained legal adulthood and hence,was not eligible to seek maintenance.
The court,however,turned down the plea,noting that Singhs daughter not be denied maintenance till she becomes financially independent,in accordance with the protection of women under the Domestic Violence Act. It also ruled that there existed no age bar for the court to grant interim maintenance to the daughter.
Nowadays,the fees of a public school or that of a private institution for pursuing a professional course after Class 12,is known to be exorbitant. Therefore,it cannot be presumed that the daughter would be able to maintain herself, the court said.
Furthermore,the question of the girls career is also to be considered. At this stage,a mere sum of Rs 2,000 cannot be considered a very hefty amount for her maintenance, the ASJ ruled.