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Supreme Court has said it is “not acceptable” that a husband and wife go on living separately for years because one of them does not agree to a mutual divorce. A bench of Justice Altmas Kabir and Justice Cyriac Joseph gave this ruling, while dissolving a sour marriage between a man and his wife, who neither wanted to live with him nor agreed to divorce him.

To give this ruling, the Supreme court had to resort to its extraordinary power conferred by Article 142 of the constitution that empowers it to dispense with legal technicalities, rules and procedures to do complete justice.

“The stand of the wife that she wants to live separately from her husband but is not agreeable to a mutual divorce is not acceptable to this court,” said the bench, ordering dissolution of the marriage of the couple, who had been living separately for more than seven years.

The apex court gave its verdict on a lawsuit by Anil Jain, seeking divorce from his estranged wife Maya Jain. The two were married in June 1985, but the marriage turned sour

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