There was mental cruelty done to husband and the High Court nailed the point straight.
From Paras 18 and 19,
18. Keeping in mind the aforesaid guiding parameters, now we proceed to examine the evidence on record. Apart from the allegations and counter allegations by the parties against each other with regard to their mutual misbehavior, the crucial point on which the respondent/ husband sought decree of divorce, and which according to him is the reason for his mental sufferings and anguishes, is the suspicious and skeptical nature of the appellant/ wife, as she used to have a doubt on his character. She was doubting his relations with one lady employee from his office. It is his case that the appellant/ wife used to visit his office and used to create scenes. She used to abuse him in filthy language on his character and used to humiliate him in front of their adolescent daughters.
19. The respondent/ husband, in his pleadings and evidence, further stated that he had purchased one plot of land and constructed a house thereon on loan and at present, the same is in possession of the appellant/ wife. He is paying installments for the repayment of the loan for house from his
salary account. To pacify her, he even transferred his house in her name. He has stated that fed-up with her acrimonious behaviour, he had to lodge reports at police station, and there were counselling before the Women Cell, and in consequence thereof, she resumed cohabitation. Lastly, he said, he had no option but to leave the house and to reside in a rented house.
20. A perusal of the written statements of the appellant/ wife would reflect that she has not denied, even by way of simple denial, about the contents in para 3 of the divorce petition of the respondent/ husband which are with regard to the suspicious nature of the appellant/ wife, doubting his character, abusing in a filthy language and visiting his office and creating scenes etc.
Crucial Paras 22 and 25,
22. In the instant case, admittedly, there are no positive allegations with regard to the character of the respondent/ husband in the written statement of the appellant/ wife. However, maintaining silence in her written statement and not countering the case of cruelty of the respondent/ husband on this ground, coupled with the fact that there were specific suggestions in the cross-examination of the respondent/ husband by taking the name of the alleged lady, in the opinion of this Court, is nothing but the unfounded allegation on the character of the husband as held in the above cited case.
25. A collective reading of his cross-examination, it appears, it is more focused on the maintenance part and less on the allegations of mental cruelty as alleged by the respondent/ husband. So the material allegations, with regard to mental cruelty as pleaded by the respondent/ husband, have neither be denied in the written statement of the appellant/ wife nor have they been sufficiently countered during his cross examination. As per law, the facts, which are not denied, are deemed to have been admitted. As per Order 8 Rule 5 of the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908, the facts which are not denied specifically are deemed to have been admitted, and simple denial is no denial. In the instant case, there is no denial at all.
26. The effect of non cross-examination of a witness was discussed by the Hon’ble Apex Court in the case of Muddasani Venkata Narsaiah (Dead) Through Legal Representatives Vs. Muddasani Sarojana, reported in (2016) 12 SCC 288, wherein Their Lordships have held that the cross-examination is a matter of substance not of procedure one isrequired to put one’s own version in cross-examination of opponent. It is further observed that the effect of non-cross examination is that the statement of witness has not been disputed. In the said judgment, the Hon’ble Apex Court relied on the judgment in the case of Maroti Bansi Teli Vs. Radhabai, reported in AIR 1945 Nag 60, wherein it has been laid down that the matters sworn to by one party in the pleadings notchallenged either in pleadings or cross-examination by other party must be accepted as fully established.
Sarita Gosawi Vs Bharat Gosawi on 05 Mar 2021
31. As rightly pointed out by the learned counsel for the respondent/ husband the case of Vijaykumar Bhate (supra) wherein, the Hon’ble Apex Court took the view that the false and malicious allegations against the character of a spouse is a ground for dissolving the marriage on account of causing mental cruelty.
32. Furthermore, the appellant/ wife could not prove her allegations with regard to demand of dowry and ill-treatment. On the contrary, it is borne out from the record that the respondent/ husband himself had to leave from his own house fed-up with her mis-behaviour.