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Wife cannot do domestic violence… Wife filed petition by taking support of this law on husband’s application – delhi high court domestic violence act 2005

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Wife cannot do domestic violence... Wife filed petition by taking support of this law on husband's application - delhi high court domestic violence act 2005
Aditya Chaudhary

Domestic Violence Act: The Delhi High Court has put a stay on the hearing of the case of making a woman an ‘accused’ under the Domestic Violence Act. Delhi’s Karkardooma court was hearing the matter. The woman had challenged the word ‘accused’ in the domestic violence case in the Delhi High Court. On the petition of the woman, the High Court has stayed the ongoing hearing in the Karkardooma court.

Actually, a husband had filed a case against his wife under the Domestic Violence Act of 2005. Since the case was filed by the husband, the wife was made the ‘accused’ in the case. The hearing of this case was going on in the Karkardooma court.

The woman had filed a petition in the Delhi High Court demanding a stay on this hearing. The woman has argued that a woman cannot be made an ‘accused’ under the Domestic Violence Act.

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Justice Jasmeet Singh laughingly asked in the High Court on the woman’s petition- ‘What is this? Did the trial court judge not apply his mind?

After this whole matter, it is important to know about the domestic violence law. Why can’t a woman be made an accused under this? What rights does this law give to a woman?

What is this law?

The Domestic Violence Act was brought in 2005 to protect a woman from domestic violence.

All those women who can be mother, sister, wife, daughter, widow in a shared household come under the purview of this law. Women living in live-in relationships have also been included in this.

Under the law, the health, safety, life, body parts or mental state of the woman living in the shared household cannot be harmed. This law covers physical, mental, verbal, emotional, economic and sexual violence. Harassing financially means that if a husband or son forcefully asks for money or anything from his wife or mother for expenses, then that woman can file a case under the Domestic Violence Act.

Not only this, a married woman cannot be harassed even for dowry. Also, women or people related to them cannot be abused, nor can they be intimidated or threatened.

Who can complain?

Only a woman can file a complaint under the Domestic Violence Act. If the woman cannot complain, then someone else can also complain on her behalf.

A child can also make a complaint under this law. The mother of such a child can file a complaint on behalf of her minor child. Then whether that child is a boy or a girl.

In Section-2(A) of the Domestic Violence Act, only a woman has been considered as a ‘victim’. ‘Victim’ means any woman who has been a victim of domestic violence.

Even in Delhi High Court, that woman has challenged the word ‘accused’ under Section-2(A). Because this section says that a ‘victim’ can only be a woman or a girl.

Against whom can I complain?

Under this law, a complaint can be made against any adult man with whom a woman has a domestic relationship. Then whether it could be husband, father, brother or any other relative.

Under this law, both male and female relatives of a man are involved. Understand it in such a way that if a woman is a victim of domestic violence in her in-laws house, then she can file a complaint against her husband as well as against her mother-in-law and her husband’s sister.

Who cannot file a complaint?

Under this law, no man can file a complaint against a woman. Even a mother-in-law cannot file a complaint against her daughter-in-law.

However, if a woman is abused by her son, she can complain against the daughter-in-law for supporting her son.

What is punishment?

Magistrate courts issue orders under this law. There are many types of orders in this. Magistrate can order to provide shelter, residence and medical facilities to the aggrieved woman.

If dowry is demanded from the wife or her family and the woman is harassed for that, then a case is registered under the Dowry Prohibition Act of 1961.

Section 498A was added to the IPC in 1986 to protect women from dowry harassment. If a woman is tortured physically, mentally or in any way for dowry, then a case is registered under this section.

Under Section-498A, if the husband or his relatives subject his wife to cruelty or torture, then on conviction he is punished with imprisonment for three years and fine.