Bombay HC quashes woman’s FIR against doctor husband over Covid-19 duty

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The Bombay High Court on Wednesday quashed an FIR filed by a woman against her doctor husband, after she told the court that the move was a result of stress due to long hours of Covid-19 duty.

The woman, a professor of microbiology, informed a bench of Justices S S Shinde and M S Karnik that she had been married for 20 years and work stress during the early days of the Covid-19 pandemic had affected her marital life. The FIR was filed under charges including domestic violence in March, at the time when the couple had been working for 18 hours a day, she said.

Although the court wanted to interview the husband, the woman, a resident of Pune, said her husband was on duty at a government-run hospital.

“In March and April, when the coronavirus-related work had increased in hospitals, there was too much stress. We were working for 18 hours every day and this led to a lot of misunderstandings,” the woman informed the court.

Following counselling though, the couple with two children, had decided to continue living together, she told the bench during a virtual hearing. Quashing the FIR, the bench said it was “very happy” to note that the couple had decided to resolve its differences and live together.

The court also said it had a “high regard” for doctors working day and night across the country to combat the pandemic, at the cost of their personal and family lives.

“We have tremendous respect for doctors and the work that they have done in such times,” the bench said.

The court decided to quash the case, even as one of the lawyers interjected. To this, the court said it had heard his client in serial and did not want to hear the case any further.

“Haven’t you heard, jab miyan biwi raazi…,” the bench told the lawyer in a lighter vein.

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