Karnatka HC : Grants custody of child to father , says mother neglecting child giving more importance to illicit relationship

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Dr Ekta Singh vs Rajeev Giri , Karnatka HC as on 31 Jan 2023


The Court noted that the woman herself did not get proper love and care from her parents and was raised by her grandparents and was, therefore, unable to respect relationships.

Para 32. If the issue regarding the relationship of the appellant with the said Shivanand juxtaposition the welfare of the child is considered, it appears that the appellant has given more importance to the illicit relationship of hers with the said Shivanand and has neglected the child. On 02.04.2018, she had left the matrimonial home along with the child and the material on record would go to show that thereafter she stayed in a rented premises which was taken on rent by the aforesaid Shivanand in the month of March 2018 itself, which would go to show that even prior to the alleged incident on 02.04.2018, the appellant had decided to leave the company of the respondent. Thereafter, she had handed over custody of the child to her parents who were residing at Panchakul in Chandigarh while she continued to stay at Bengaluru with Shivanand.

Para 33. The appellant had given birth to the girl child in the month of April 2015, and thereafter, in the year 2016, she had joined Columbia Asia Hospital in Bengaluru and started working on the administrative side. It is in the said hospital, she came in contact with Shivanand, who was also working on the administrative side and even after knowing he was married and had a child from the said marriage, the appellant developed intimacy with him and she spent most of the weekends with him and hardly gave any time to the child who was being taken care by the respondent and his parents with the help of housemaid. The material on record would go to show that after the appellant developed illicit relationship with the said Shivanand, till the time she left the matrimonial home in the month of April 2018, the appellant and the said Shivanand had stayed overnight in many hotels and lodges in and around Bengaluru and this aspect is prima facie proved by the respondent by producing necessary documents which proves the stay of the appellant with the said Shivanand in various hotels and lodges overnight and on certain dates, they had even checked in as husband and wife. There are several photographs in Ex.P-8 – series which shows the appellant in the company of the said Shivanand and in certain photographs even the minor child is present with them.

Para 34. The respondent Husband , after coming to know about the illicit affair of the appellant, had lodged a complaint before the jurisdictional police against the appellant and the said Shivanand, and the police after investigation have filed a detailed charge sheet against the appellant and Shivanand for the offences punishable under Sections 420, 497, 109, 504, 506, 418 read with 34 IPC and Sections 75 & 87 of Juvenile Justice Act. The police during the course of investigation have secured the records relating to the hotel stay of the accused persons, their call records, their bank statements and also their email correspondences which prima facie show that the accused persons were in illicit relationship

In its order, the High Court noted that the mother herself did not get proper love of her parents as she was brought up by her grandparents. 

“It appears therefore, that she has no respect or value for the relationships and she was in the habit of quarrelling on silly issues. She also did not want to stay with her in-laws, and therefore, she saw to it that they left the house. In spite of such behaviour, the in-laws came back to the house, when she was pregnant and they not only took care of her during her pregnancy, but also took care of the child. Despite all this, she deliberately raised quarrel with them and threw them out of the house,” the bench noted.

“The Court is not only required to consider the bonding and comfort of the child, but also the environment in which it is presently growing keeping in mind about the welfare and future growth of child. In addition to financial security, it must also consider if the parent would be available for the child when it is in need of their love and affection and under whose care and protection the child would have a better future,” the bench observed. 

“Home is the first school of the child and parents are its first teachers. When the child is deprived of a proper parenthood, its overall growth and happiness gets affected and in such situation, the Courts are not only required to consider the comforts and attachments of the child but should also consider the surroundings in which the child is growing, the moral and ethical values which the child learns by observation, availability of care and affection when the child needs it most and thereafter strike a balance which would be more beneficial for the child’s welfare and interest,” the bench observed. 

The Karnataka High Court upheld the order of a family court handing over the custody of a minor boy to his father as the court found that the child’s mother gave more importance to her illicit relationship with another man

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