Kishore Vs. Meeru Sharma & ANR.  INSC 1372 (4 August 2009)
REPORTABLE IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION CIVIL
APPEAL NO. 5077 OF 2009 (Arising out of S.L.P. (C) No.680 of 2009) Lalit
Kishore ----Appellant Versus Meeru Sharma & Anr. ----Respondents
This is an appeal filed against the judgment and order dated 2nd
of December, 2008 in W.P.No.10290 of 2007 of the High Court of Madhya Pradesh
at Jabalpur by which the application filed by the husband-appellant for medical
examination of his wife-respondent for ascertaining her mental condition was
rejected by the Family Court at Jabalpur, which was affirmed by the High Court
in W.P.No.10290 of 2007.
In our view, the High Court as well as the Family Court was not
justified in rejecting the application for medical examination of the
wife-respondent. It is difficult to conceive that the Family Court cannot be
conferred with jurisdiction to pass an order for medical examination in an
appropriate case because when such report is received, that would facilitate
the court in giving a positive conclusion on the mental condition of the
wife-respondent. It is true that the Hindu Marriage Act or any other law governing
the field does not contain any express provision empowering the court to issue
direction upon a party in a matrimonial proceeding to compel him to submit
herself/himself to a medical examination. But, in our view, it does not
preclude the court from passing such an order. The court is always empowered to
satisfy itself as to whether a party before it suffers from mental illness or
not either for the purpose of taking evidence on the ground for which the
matrimonial proceeding was started. It is well settled that the primary duty of
3 the court is to see that the truth comes out.
although the medical examination for a party is not provided in the Act, even
then, the court has complete inherent power in an appropriate case under
Section 151 of the Code of Civil Procedure to pass all orders for doing
complete justice to the parties to the suit. In Sharda vs. Dharmpal [(2003) 4
SCC 493], a three-Judge Bench decision of this Court has taken into
consideration the power of the court to allow such application for medical
examination of a party in a matrimonial proceeding and observed as under :-
"In certain cases medical examination by the experts in the field may not
only be found to be leading to the truth of the matter but may also lead to removal
of misunderstanding between the parties. It may being the parties to
In view of the aforesaid decision of this Court and considering
the fact that the report of the medical expert would only be an evidence in the
proceeding, we do not find any reason why such application for 4 appointment of
a medical expert to examine the wife-respondent cannot be granted.
For the reasons aforesaid, the impugned order as well as the order
of the Family Court are set aside.
application for appointment of a medical expert for medical examination of the
wife-respondent filed at the instance of the husband-appellant is thus allowed.
The appeal is thus allowed. There will be no order as to costs.
...........................J. [Tarun Chatterjee]