Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Couple in 80s battles for divorce, property

Couple in 80s battles for divorce, property

Wednesday, Aug 4, 2010, 2:06 IST

Eighty-four-year-old JM Kohli is not only battling brain haemorrhage, but is also busy fighting his divorce case to separate from his 80-year-old wife Vimla.

Kohli and Vimla got married in 1953. But things soon turned sour between the two and the couple divorced in 1955. However, Vimla then decided to give the marriage a second chance and entered into a compromise with Kohli in 1967.

But Vimla’s greed for property led to the couple splitting ways. Senior advocate Geeta Luthra appearing for Kohli said, “Kohli was befooled by Vimla’s brother and other people and they all use tactics to stop his promotion and other benefits [Kohli worked as a senior officer in the Central Public Works Department]… In 1979, when Vimla’s brother got a DDA flat in Munirka, she asked Kohli to make all the payments and moved in there with her 25-year-old daughter.”

Few months later, Vimla and her daughter forced Kohli to leave the house. After remaining homeless for years, Kohli finally filed for divorce in 1983 in a trial court. The decree in Kohli’s favour was finally passed in 1994.

After divorcing Vimla, Kohli married Usha. The couple has a 10-year-old son.

But Vimla did not give up. She filed a property declaration suit against Kohli in a Delhi court, which he subsequently challenged in the Delhi high court. Vimla moved the high court in 2003 challenging the trial court’s verdict in the divorce case which ruled in Kohli’s favour.

Challenging Kohli’s declaration suit Vimla sought right to the Punjabi Bagh property. However, Luthra argued, “Kohli was forced to give the statement that Vimla has equal rights to the property and his statement was recorded by the court as well… Kohli remains very ill and has even suffered a brain hemorrhage, but it was Usha and not Vimla who took care of him.”

Therefore, the property should be given to the son and not Vimla, Luthra said.

Justice Kailash Gambhir, who was hearing the matter, said, “It is unfortunate that both the parties have to fight their cases at this age. However, both the kids [daughter and son] have equal rights to the property.”

The court has asked both parties to arrive at an amicable solution and has posted the matter for hearing on August 11.

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