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 Alimony in Divorce Cases in India
Though alimony is a very important matter to deal with during the litigation of a divorce case, the very perception of right to claim the financial support for post divorce maintenance was not quite a familiar concept among the Indian divorce seekers, especially women even few years back. But as the rate of divorce is increasing in India at a rapid speed, people are becoming aware of the various details related to divorce laws. The era of feminist campaigns, and spread of education among women

have contributed to the growing applicability of alimony in divorce cases. 

The alimony or the spousal support is an obligation by laws in almost all the countries of the world. It is expected that both the spouses irrespective of the sex must bear the maintenance support during and after marriage. 

The concept of alimony came in vogue due to the indissolubility nature of marriage. According to marriage conventions marriage is a sacred union. Once the knot is tied, the duties and obligations of marriage are to be carried out for the rest of the life even if there is mental disparity or physical separation between the husband and the wife. The husband is bound to take up the responsibilities for the maintenance of his wife in spite of sharing an estranged relationship. As time changed, the laws and education empowered woman, divorce came as a spontaneous solution for an unsuccessful marriage.

The Indian Divorce Act, 1869 

37. Power to order permanent alimony
The High Court may, if it thinks fit, on any decree absolute declaring a marriage to be dissolved, or on any decree of judicial separation obtained by the wife, and the District Judge may, if he thinks fit, on the confirmation of any decree or his declaring a marriage to be dissolved, or on any decree of judicial separation obtained by the wife,
Order that the husband shall, to the satisfaction of the Court, secure to the wife such gross sum of money, or such annual sum of money for any term not exceeding her own life, as, having regard to her fortune (if any), to the ability of the husband, and to the conduct of the parties, it thinks reasonable; and for that purpose may cause a proper instrument to be executed by all necessary.

Power to order monthly or weekly payments.-In every such case the Court may make an order on the husband for payment to the wife of such monthly or weekly sums for her maintenance and support as the Court may think reasonable:

Provided that if the husband after wards from any cause becomes unable to make such payments, it shall be lawful for the Court to discharge or modify the order, or temporarily to suspend the same as to the whole or any part of the money so ordered to be paid, and again to revive the same order wholly or in part as to the Court seems fit.

section 36. Alimony pendente lite
In any suit under this Act, whether it be instituted by a husband or a wife, and whether or not she has obtained an order of protection the wife may present a petition for alimony pending the suit.
Such petition shall be served on the husband; and the Court, on being satisfied of the truth of the statements therein contained, may make such order on the husband for payment to the wife of alimony pending the suit as it may deem just:

Provided that alimony pending the suit shall in no case exceed one-fifth of the husband’s average net income for the three years next preceding the date of the order, and shall continue, in case of a decree for dissolution of marriage or of nullity of marriage, until the decree is made absolute or is confirmed, as the case may be.
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