Report No. 136
4.14.3. Why in the opinion of the Law Commission the view subscribed to for the Bombay and Karnataka High Courts is correct and how to salvage the situation arising out of the conflict.-
A decree for divorce involves declaration and adjudication of the status of a spouse. But its relevance does not disappear when the other spouse, say husband, dies. If the decree is untenable in law, the status of the wife will subsist. In that case she would be entitled to succeed to the estate of her deceased husband in her capacity as his widow.
If an appeal is allowed to abate on the death of, say, the husband, then even an untenable decree of divorce passed against the wife will remain in full force and she will be deprived of her right to succeed to the estate of her deceased husband in her capacity as his widow. The view that the proceeding does not abate is plausible and there is no compulsion in law or logic to hold otherwise. It, therefore, stands to reason, and also promotes the ends of justice, to adopt the Bombay-Karnataka view that the proceeding does not abate.