What are the grounds for divorce in India?

In India, The Divorce Rate Has Been Rising, Especially In Recent Years. Let’s Take A Look At The Provisions Of Divorce Directly Relevant To The Civil Procedure Code, 1908, As More Tense Couples Turn To The Legal System With Marriage And Divorce Issues. Several Personal Laws Based On Various Religious Beliefs Have Been Introduced By The Indian Court System Because Of Its Secular Outlook. There Are Different Marriage Laws And Grounds For Divorce In India For Hindus, Christians, And Muslims.

Grounds for divorce under the Hindu Marriage Act of 1955

According To The Hindu Marriage Act Of 1955, The Following Are The Reasons For Divorce In India.


Adultery Is The Act Of Engaging In Any Type Of Sexual Connection, Including Extramarital Partnerships. Adultery Is Considered Criminal Conduct, And Strong Evidence Is Needed To Prove It. According To A 1976 Legislative Amendment, The Petitioner Just Needs To Commit One Act Of Adultery To Qualify For A Divorce.


When A Spouse Suffers Any Form Of Mental Or Physical Harm That Puts Their Life, Limb, Or Health In Jeopardy, They Have The Right To Apply For Divorce. The Intangible Acts Of Cruelty Committed By Mental Torture Are Assessed Based On A Series Of Episodes Rather Than A Single Act. Cruelty Includes Things Like Depriving Someone Of Food, Abusing Them Continuously To Get A Dowry, Engaging In Perverted Sexual Behavior, Etc.


The Abandoned Spouse May Seek Divorce On The Grounds Of Desertion If One Of The Spouses Voluntarily Separates From The Other For At Least Two Years.


If One Of The Two Decides To Change Their Religion, The Other Spouse May File For Divorce Using This Cause.

Mental Illness

If The Petitioner’s Spouse Has An Incurable Mental Illness Or Is Insane, It Is Unreasonable To Assume That The Pair Will Be Able To Cohabitate. This Is A Reason For Filing For Divorce.


If One Spouse Has A “Virulent And Incurable” Form Of Leprosy, The Other Spouse May Petition On This Basis

Venereal Disease

If One Of The Couples Has A Serious, Easily Contagious Illness, The Other Spouse May Apply For Divorce. AIDS And Other Sexually Transmitted Diseases Are Classified As Venereal Diseases


If One Spouse Joins A Religious Organization And Renounces All Worldly Interests, The Other Spouse Has The Right To Apply For Divorce.

Presumption of Death

A Person Is Assumed To Be Dead If They Are Not Seen Or Heard By People Who Are ‘Naturally Heard Of Them For A Continuous Period Of Seven Years. If One Spouse Wants To Remarry, The Other Should Be Required To Apply For Divorce.

No Resumption of Cohabitation

If The Couple Does Not Start Cohabiting Again After The Court Has Issued A Decree Of Separation, This Constitutes Grounds For Divorce.

These are the reasons for divorce that can only be petitioned by the wife

  • If The Husband Has Engaged In Sodomy, Bestiality, Or Rape.
  • The First Wife May File For Divorce If The Union Was Consummated Before The Passage Of The Hindu Marriage Act And The Husband Afterwards Wed A Different Lady While The First Wife Was Still Living.
  • If A Female Marries At The Age Of Fifteen And Separates From Her Spouse Before Becoming Eighteen, She Is Eligible To Apply For A Divorce.
  • The Wife May File For Divorce If There Has Been No Cohabitation For A Year And The Husband Disregards The Court-Ordered Maintenance Order.

Grounds for divorce under the Dissolution of Muslim Marriages Act 1939

According To The Dissolution Of Muslim Marriage Act, 1939, A Muslim Woman May File For Divorce In India For The Following Reasons.

  • For Four Years, The Husband’s Whereabouts Have Been A Mystery.
  • The Husband Has Neglected To Pay The Wife’s Maintenance For At Least Two Years.
  • The Wife Has Been Imprisoned For At Least Seven Years.
  • The Spouse Is Unable To Fulfil His Commitments To The Marriage.
  • The Girl Marries Before The Age Of Fifteen And Decides To Divorce Before The Age Of Eighteen.
  • The Husband Engages In Nasty Behaviour.

Grounds for divorce under the Indian Divorce Act of 1869

The Indian Divorce Act Of 1869 Lists The Following As Grounds For Divorce.

  • Adultery
  • Conversion To A Different Faith
  • For At Least Two Years Before The Divorce Petition, One Of The Partners Had Either Leprosy Or A Contagious Venereal Disease.
  • Not Being Heard Or Seen For Over Seven Years Or More.
  • Two Years Of Non-Observance Of The Restoration Of Conjugal Rights.
  • Inflicting Cruelty And Causing Mental Stress, Both Of Which Can Be Harmful To Health And Life.
  • The Grounds For A Divorce That A Wife May Use Are Rape, Sodomy, And Bestiality.

Grounds for divorce under the Parsi Marriage and Divorce Act, 1936

The Parsi Marriage And Divorce Act, 1936, And Its Revision In 1988 Both Include The Following As Grounds For Divorce In India.

  • A Seven-Year Absence Without Interruption.
  • A Marriage That Is Not Consummated Within A Year.
  • Insanity, As Long As The Other Spouse Was Ignorant Of The Circumstance At The Time Of The Marriage And The Divorce Is Requested Within Three Years Of The Union.
  • Pregnancy By Another Man, Provided The Husband Was Not Aware Of The Event At The Time Of The Marriage And That He Had No Sexual Activity After Learning About The Circumstance. Within Two Years Of The Marriage, A Divorce Petition Must Be Submitted.
  • Any Sort Of Impure Sexual Activity, Including Adultery, Bigamy, Fornication, Rape, And So Forth.
  • Cruel Conduct
  • Having A Venereal Condition Or Compelling The Wife To Become A Prostitute.
  • Given A Prison Term Of Seven Years Or Longer
  • Desertion Of Two Years Or Longer
  • Refusing To Live Together Again After A Court Has Issued A Maintenance Order Or A Judicial Separation Judgment.

Learn about different Divorce Laws in India

Importance of Mediation in a Divorce Case

A Legal Framework For Resolving A Legal Dispute Between The Parties Is Provided Through Alternative Dispute Resolution. In The Mediation Process, A Mediator Is Chosen To Assist The Parties In Resolving The Conflict By Generating Potential Solutions And Highlighting That Each Party Is Responsible For Making Their Own Decisions That Will Have An Impact On Them, Without Placing Any Terms Of Settlement On Either Party.

The Court Must First Attempt To Reach An Amicable Resolution In Every Lawsuit Or Procedure Where One Might Be Possible. The Court May Also Adjourn The Case For A While If, At Any Point During The Proceedings, It Appears To The Family Court That A Reasonable Chance Of Settlement Exists.

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WeVaad Is An Online Platform That Offers Services Related To Online Arbitration, Mediation, And Conciliation Of Disputes. WeVaad Makes It Simple For Parties Involved In Matrimonial Disputes To File Their Case. The Parties Are Completely Free To Withdraw From The Process At Any Time, And We Take Care To Protect Their Confidentiality. Our Legal Professionals Can Serve As Mediators And Help Resolve Conflicts. You Are Welcome To Contact WeVaad If You Are Experiencing Any Marital Problems Or Book A Consultation Call With Our Expert.