Not right to deprive child’s access to grandparents : Bombay High Court

Observing that it is not right to deprive access of a child to his/her grandparents, the Bombay High Court directed a Mumbai-based woman to let her 10-year- old son meet her former in-laws once a week.

A division bench of Justices S J Kathawalla and B P Colabawalla earlier this week rejected a petition filed by the woman challenging a family court order, which directed her to let her late husband’s parents meet their grandson once a week, or as and when they come to Mumbai from Delhi.

The woman, who has now remarried, in her petition claimed that when she was married to her late husband, she was not treated well by her in-laws. She also said her son has never met his grandparents since his birth.

The bench, however, refused to accept this argument.

“The reason given by the appellant (woman) that she was not treated well by her in-laws cannot be a ground to deprive access of the child to his grandparents. If the boy has not met his grandparents till date, it is the appellant who is responsible for it,” the court said.

The boy was born in December 2009. His father died in February 2010. The boy’s mother then started living with her parents and later remarried.

The woman’s former in-laws approached the family court seeking access to their grandchild.

In June 2014, the family court allowed the grandparents to meet the boy whenever they visit Mumbai.

However, the woman did not comply with the order following which the grandparents re-approached the family court seeking execution of its 2014 order.

The family court, in its order last month, directed the woman to allow the grandparents to meet the child in the court premises every Saturday, and warned that if she fails to do so, a fine of Rs 5,000 would be imposed on her.

The woman then approached the high court.

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