A single judge of Delhi High Court held as follows,
From Paras 13-15,
Bharti Anand Vs Sushant Anand and Ors on 26 Apr 2022
13. Although the complaint contains several allegations against the respondent Nos. 3 and 4 as noted above, as far as the living arrangements are concerned, it is the case of the complainant herself that the matrimonial home in Jalandhar was shared between her and the respondent Nos. 1 and 2. The respondent Nos. 3 and 4 (being the sister-in-law of the petitioner and her husband) visited often for various lengths of time, but there is no suggestion that they were, or intended to be, permanently resident in the said household. It is in this context that the MM and the Appellate Court have reached the conclusion that there is no domestic relationship between the petitioner and the respondent Nos. 3 and 4.
14. The Supreme Court in Satish Chander Ahuja vs. Sneha Ahuja7, with respect to the definition of shared household in the DV Act, has observed inter alia as follows:-
“68. The words “lives or at any stage has lived in a domestic relationship” have to be given its normal and purposeful meaning. The living of woman in a household has to refer to a living which has some permanency. Mere fleeting or casual living at different places shall not make a shared household. The intention of the parties and the nature of living including the nature of household have to be looked into to find out as to whether the parties intended to treat the premises as shared household or not. As noted above, the 2005 Act was enacted to give a higher right in favour of women. The 2005 Act has been enacted to provide for more effective protection of the rights of the women who are victims of violence of any kind occurring within the family. The Act has to be interpreted in a manner to effectuate the very purpose and object of the Act. Section 2(s) read with Sections 17 and 19 of the 2005 Act grants an entitlement in favour of the woman of the right of residence under the shared household irrespective of her having any legal interest in the same or not.”
15. While the above observations of the Court are in the context of the place of residence of the “aggrieved person”, it would equally apply to the identification of those who may be properly impleaded as respondents on the basis of residence in the shared household. Just as the woman living fleetingly or casually at different places, would not convert those places into a “shared household”, the visits of sundry family members to the matrimonial home, without permanency or the intention to treat the premises as shared household, would not render them as members of the “shared household”.
Index of Domestic Violence cases is here.