Opposed overseas court docket orders don’t disentitle girl to minor children’ custody: Bombay HC

The Sri Lankan national’s plea said his estranged wife had lost the right to retain custody of her underage children because she “acted inappropriately” in opposing a Sri Lankan court order in India and refusing the subpoena

From Kanchan Chaudhari

PUBLISHED MAY 04, 2021 10:25 AM

The Bombay Supreme Court has denied a Sri Lankan citizen’s request that his estranged wife had lost the right to retain custody of their underage children because she “acted inappropriately” against the order of a Sri Lankan court in India hold and refuse to accept his subpoena.

The couple married in March 2010 and lived in the United States, where their first child was born in 2013. The second child was born in India in 2014. The discord began after the couple moved to Sri Lanka in 2015.

The husband said the woman took the children to India (Thane) by order of a district court dated October 3, 2017, allegedly for two weeks, and did not return to Sri Lanka thereafter. He said the district court order was overturned on October 10 by a Sri Lankan supreme court.

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The Bombay Supreme Court said its focus is on the best interests of children under applicable law. “We think that the children feel comfortable with their mother in India. Her progress report appears to be satisfactory, and only because we say there are orders against her mother from a foreign court that would not prevent her from continuing her custody. “

The court rejected the petitioner’s emphasis on the issue of the children’s identity as Sri Lankan nationals. The Supreme Court has ruled that while determining what is in their best interest for child custody, factors like children’s citizenship become insignificant. “… the fact that children are Sri Lankan citizens and the older child are also American citizens cannot be a determining factor when it comes to the relief requested in the petition.”

The Bombay Supreme Court found that the two children were admitted to a school in Thane. It added that they “seemed to have developed roots” and also became familiar with the local language and adapted to the school.

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