Bombay HC lets mother take her minor daughter to Poland: ‘Can’t be asked to choose between child & career’
Observing that a “woman cannot be asked to choose between her child and career,” the Bombay High Court on Wednesday set aside a Family Court order that restrained a woman, a Pune resident, from taking her 9-year-old daughter and relocating to Krakow, Poland, for two years.
The court said the woman had the “important right to development” and directed her estranged husband to give his no-objection stipulated in law, so that her daughter could avail the visa for Poland.
The woman had left her matrimonial home in Delhi along with her daughter in 2016, citing mental torture and ill treatment by her husband and his family, and had applied for dissolution of the marriage in 2017. She had sought to be declared as the sole guardian and custodian of the minor child, so that she had the right to take her daughter with her to Poland.
However, the estranged husband had refused to give a no-objection for his daughter to shift to Poland and moved the Family Court, which had passed a restraining order against the petitioner, prompting her to approach the High Court.
“I do not think that the court can refuse the job prospects to a mother, who is inclined to take up the job and she cannot be deprived of this opportunity… Noticing that the impugned order has failed to consider the important aspect of right to development, being vested in the petitioner as she cannot be asked to choose between her child and her career, the impugned order is quashed and set aside,” stated Justice Bharati H Dangre.
The court was told by advocates Abhijit Sarwate and Hardev Kaur that their client, an engineer, wanted to work in a senior position in an establishment at Krakow, Poland, and had a “one time opportunity” to do so. The opportunity would also improve the standard of living of her daughter, as well as provide her the due care and affection which only a mother can give, they said.
The court was further informed that the couple had got married in 2010 and they had a daughter in 2013. While the couple was living in Delhi, due to constant “hostile treatment” by her mother-in-law and other members of her husband’s family, the petitioner decided to leave the matrimonial home and returned to her parents’ home in Pune in 2016 along with her daughter. She filed a plea for dissolution of marriage in Family Court, Pune, in 2017.
In the plea, the petitioner’s lawyers said the right to development was a basic human right, which is recognised by the Supreme Court, and the same cannot be denied to the petitioner.
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