India high court restrains man from approaching fourth wife, stealing child


The Bombay High Court restrained a 47-year-old man, his mother and sister from approaching his fourth wife or attempting to take away her two-month-old child, Hindustan Times reported on Friday.

The 22-year-old woman had approached the Bandra magistrate court with a complaint under the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence (DV) Act, 2005, stating that her husband, who is in a Dubai jail for fraud, cheated her into marrying him without disclosing his age and that he has three other wives. She said her husband, his mother and sister repeatedly threatened to separate her from her boy when he was born. The woman then approached the high court after the magistrate court on January 3 rejected her plea for interim protection.

Justice Mridula Bhatkar said Section 23 of the DV Act empowers the magistrate to pass appropriate interim orders “as he deems fit and proper” in the facts and circumstances of the case, and the woman’s case was one where the magistrate ought to have granted her much needed interim protection.

“The magistrate ought to have taken into account that the baby is only two months old,” said the judge. The judge said an ex-parte interim order was required to be passed in view of the criminal background of her husband.