IPC 498a,323,504,506,

Indian Penal Code.

I`m one of the dowry harassment Law(498A) victim.
We got Married on 26th April 1997.
Ours was arranged marriage,Since begining she was not ready to mingle with my Family, only one week we stayed with my parents then we went to Bombay, where i was working. In the 2nd week of marriage she demanded DIVORCE, which i was not ready to give, then she and her family started to harasse me, After one year our 1st child born i found out, that she had affair with other man, and she wanted to marry him.but i never questioned her about it, she was Fun loving girl, After she come back from delivery,she started act strange,her words were sharp,and she was doing as her mother/sister told her. Even once her mother told her in front me, NOT to cook. and she did that. i fought with her that day. she was complaining i was not doing as she wanted.

All she wanted is; I have to do as she says
I have to give money to her brothers, whenever they want, and never ask it to return.
I have to give all my salary in her hand to manage home
I Should not ask, where she goes at night
I have to wish her all Family members on occation,but she never done same to my Family.
Her Father was thretened me that I have to cook for her Even After coming back from Office
I have to bring Good Expensive wishkey when Family members come home, when i refuse to do coz i`m not drinking and i`m against alcohol;she made to promise to our neighbour that i`ll start drinking [ I see women who pray/do pasting for thier husband to STOP drinking.]
She was insulting me when i drink pepsi in get-together,saying its childs drink.
She was telling smoking was style of society- coz i was not smoking.
She was telling she was not SLAVE to do house hold work.
I was doing my laundry I can challenge any women in cooking(she never been to kitchen till her marriage)
She never know how to hold a needle - I was stiching kids cloths and buttons
She Demanded to write my Flat to her name
She always demanded to make more new gold ornaments-now she took all my gold with her

Later she called 7/8 relatives at night to my house, and threatned me, As a Christian i took this matter to Church,but they walked away insulted, next day night she came with some women relatives took all my money/gold insurence by force. i did`t went to police, thinking it should not made public,but next morning she lodged false complaint of dowry harassment on me. when i came back from office police were waiting for me. i was charge sheeted,i never took or demanded single paise as dowry, even i gave half of the money as wedding expenses.

On 28th October night 3 men came to my Flat,to threaten me,i did`t opened the door, i knew who they are and  sent by whom. Her sister Husband was arrested/convicted for murder of his Brother-in-law for 7 years, and they have criminal background, in Bombay for just 1000Rs they murder someone. i did`t went to police because before that, also i went to lodge complaint, when her Family members threatened me to break my arms and limbs, Police made me to wait for 2 hours,and took my statemnet, but did nothing. next day everyone adviced me to leave the city.
On 30th Oct 2000 i left India
without telling whereabouts to my parents even.
I was contacting my friend through Email and asking for the court date.

After 3 years, this case is still going on, she never came to the court,but LAW turn blind eye on that, if i`m not present for one court date, they issue Arrest warrant for me. Even my lawyer is not doing anything, he try to get more money, i paid so much money, totally i spent 2.5 Lakhs of Rupees in last 3 years. still nothing happend.
Court issued 3 Warrants against me, I went to india and got cancelled those warants After 2 years i returned to india and asked the judge to do justice. He sent summons to her,she never came to the court after i left India; coz she also left india, now she is working in Dubai(UAE)i know where she is working and she cann`t come for every date meanwhile i appealed for divorce, Her parents refuse to take the court notice coz she was not there. now court Granted me Ex-parte After one year of appeal. i kept her 498a till i get divorce,After divorce i will charge her for misusing the law, i already talked to a lawyer in Bombay High-court who was working with me before.


In this whole drama, even today, I know she is Innocent,whatever she has done to me,was inspired by those TV serials and her Mother/sister. I found her, in our married life together, she was a nice girl, spoiled by her parents.
I tried to contact her many time, but her Parents stoped me/her to meet each other.
Now she is affraid, If i take her back,I`ll really harass her and she cann`t do anything
Only I can say is
SHE DUG HER OWN GRAVE

My Charges were :

IPC 498A: "Cruelty by husband or relatives of husband"
IPC 323   : "Voluntarily causing hurt with full knowledge and intention".
IPC 504   : "Intentional insult and provocation for breaking public peace"
IPC 506   : "Criminal intimidation with a threat to cause death".

THIS IS OUR GREAT LAW.

IPC-498A Husband or relative of husband of a woman subjecting her to cruelty :
Section 498 A of Indian Penal Code was introduced by Criminal Law (Second Amendment) Act of 1983, which came into force with effect from 25th December 1983. This section reflects the anxiety to extend protection to the weaker spouse. Let us see what Section 498 A speaks about;

"Whoever, being the husband or the relative of the husband of a woman, subjects such woman to cruelty shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years and shall also be liable to fine".

Explanation- For the purpose of this section, "cruelty" means-

(a) Any wilful conduct which is of such a nature as is likely to drive the woman to commit suicide or to cause grave injury or danger to life, limb or health (whether physical or mental) of the woman; or
(b) Harassment of the woman where such harassment is with a view to coercing her or any person related to her to meet any lawful demand for any property or valuable security or is on account of failure by her or any person related to her to meet such demand.

The perusal of clause (a) would show that the prosecution has to establish firstly the wilful conduct of the offender, secondly that then nature of such conduct was likely to drive a woman to commit suicide or to cause grave injury or danger to life, limb or health (whether physical or mental). On proof of these facts to the satisfaction of the Court under the circumastances of a particular case the husband or the relatives of the husband shall be presumed to have treated the woman with cruelty.

Clause (b) of the above mentioned explanation shows that the harassment with a view to coercing her or any person related to her meet any unlawful demand for property or valuable security or on account of the failure by her or any person related to her to meet such demand would amount to cruelty for the purpose of Section 498 A of IPC.

Cruelty:
The expression "cruelty" takes within its sweep both mental and physical agony and torture. The concept of "cruelty" varies from place to place and individual and according to the social and economic status of the person involved. To decide the question of cruelty the relevant factors are the matrimonial relationship between the husband and wife, their cultural background and temperment, status in life, status of health, their interaction in their daily life, which dominate the aspect of cruelty.

Though the provision covers both physical as well as mental cruelty, each and every harassment is not cruelty. The harassment has to be with the object to coerce the woman or any person related to her to meet any unlawful demnad. In order to come into the ambit of cruelty under clause (b) by husband, the harassment must be to extract money unlawfully from the woman by the man. Unless this is proved, no offence under Section 498 A can be alleged to have been committed.

Harassment:
The word harassment has not been defined in Section 498-A of IPC. The meaning of the word "harass" in the Webster's Dictionary reads thus: "to subject someone to continuos vexatious attacks, questions, demands or other unpleasantness".

IPC-323. Punishment for voluntarily causing hurt

Whoever, except in the case provided for by Section 334, voluntarily causes hurt, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to one year, or with fine which may extend to one thousand rupees, or with both.

IPC-334. Voluntarily causing hurt on provocation

Whoever voluntarily causes hurt on grave and sudden provocation, if he neither intends nor knows himself to be likely to cause hurt to any person other than the person who gave the provocation, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to one month, or with fine which may extend to five hundred rupees, or with both.

IPC-504. Intentional insult with intent to provoke breach of the peace

Whoever intentionally insults, and thereby gives provocation to any person, intending or knowing it to be likely that such provocation will cause him to break the public peace, or to commit any other. offence, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to two years, or with fine, or with both.

IPC-506. Punishment for criminal intimidation

Whoever commits, the offence of criminal intimidation shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to two years, or with fine, or with both;

If threat be to cause death or grievous hurt, etc- and if the threat be to cause death or grievous hurt, or to cause the destruction of any property by fire, or to cause an offence punishable with death or 152[imprisonment for life], or with imprisonment for a term which may extend to seven years, or to impute, unchastity to a woman, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to seven years, or With fine, or with both.


You Can Charge her, when you get out of 498a.

IPC-191.Giving false evidence

Section 191 of Indian Penal Code provides
"Whoever being legally bound by an oath or by an express provision of law to state the truth, or being bound by law to make a declaration upon any subject, makes any statement which is false, and which he either knows or believes to be false or does not believe to be true, is said to give false evidence".

Explanation:
1. A statement is within the meaning of this section whether it is made verbally or otherwise.
2. A false statement as to the belief of the person attesting is within the meaning of this section, and a person may be guilty of giving false evidence by stating that he believes a thing, which he does not believe, as well as by stating that he knows a thing which he does not know.

For example,
1. A, being bound by an oath to state the truth, states that he knows that Z was at a particular place on a particular day, not knowing anything upon the subject. A gives false evidence whether Z was at that place on the day named or not.
2. The petitioner who has made false statement on oath is also liable for the prosecution.
3. The making of a false affidavit is giving false evidence within this section. The making of a false affidavit would be an offence irrespective of the fact that it was not necessary for the deponent who had made the affidavit to make it.

Ingredients of this section:
The accused was bound legally by an oath or by an express provision of law to state the truth or make a declaration upon any subject.
He made such a statement or declaration.
He made it intentionally.
He knew or believed it to be false or did not believe it to be true.
It must be made in a judicial proceeding at any stage.

This section defines what amounts to giving of false evidence. In order to attract this section, it is sufficient if the person making the statement makes it advisedly, knowing it to be false, and with the intention of deceiving the Court, and of letting it be supposed that what he states, is true. The above-mentioned ingredients must be satisfied.

If a person is not bound by an express provision of law to state the truth he cannot be charged with making a false statement.
The offence is a bailable offence and is triable by a Magistrate of First Class.

Punishment:
Imprisonment for 7 years and fine

IPC-209. Dishonestly making false claim in Court

    Whoever fraudulently or dishonestly, or with intent to injure or annoy any person, makes in a Court of Justice any claim which he knows to be false, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to two years, and shall also be liable to fine.

IPC-211. False charge of offence made with intent to injure

    Whoever, with intent to cause injury to any person, institutes or causes to be instituted any criminal proceeding against that person, or falsely charges any person with having committed an offence, knowing that there is no just or lawful ground for such proceeding or charge against that person, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to two years, or with fine, or with both;

    and if such criminal proceeding be instituted on a false charge of an offence punishable with death, 104[imprisonment for life], or imprisonment for seven years or upwards, shall be punishable with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to seven years, and shall also be liable to fine.

IPC- 452. House-trespass after preparation for hurt, assault or wrongful restraint

Whoever commits house-trespass, having made preparation for causing hurt to any person or for assaulting any person, or for wrongfully restraining any person, or for putting any person in fear of hurt, or of assault, or of wrongful restraint, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to seven years, and shall also be liable to fine.

IPC-378. Theft

Whoever, intending to take dishonestly any moveable property out of the possession of any person without that person's consent, moves that property in order to such taking, is said to commit theft.

IPC-379. Punishment for theft

Whoever commits theft shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to three years, or with fine, or with both.

IPC-380. Theft in dwelling house, etc

Whoever commits theft in any building, tent or vessel, which building, tent or vessel is used as a human dwelling., or used for the custody of property, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to seven years, and shall also be liable to fine.

IPC-499.Defamation
Section 499 of Indian Penal Code provides that "Whoever by words either spoken or intended to be read, or by signs or by visible representations, makes or publishes any imputation concerning any person intending to harm, or knowing or having reason to believe that such imputation will harm, the reputation of such person, is said, except in the cases hereinafter excepted, do defame that person".

Explanation 1: It may amount to defamation to impute anything to a deceased person, if the imputation would harm the reputation of that person if living, and is intended to be hurtful to the feelings of his family or other near relatives.
Explanation 2: It may amount to defamation to make an imputation concerning a company or an association or collection of persons as such.
Explanation 3: An imputation in the form of an alternative or expressed ironically, may amount to defamation.
Explanation 4: No imputation is said to harm a person's reputations, unless that imputation directly or indirectly, in the estimation of others, lowers the moral or intellectual character of that person, or lowers the character of that person in respect of his caste or of his calling, or lowers the credit of that person, or causes it to be believed that the body of that person is in a loathsome state, or in a state generally considered as disgraceful.

Illustrations:
1. A says: "Z is an honest man; he never stole B's watch"; intending to cause it to be believed that Z did steal B's watch. This is defamation unless it falls within one of the exceptions.
2. A is asked who stole B's watch. A points to Z, intending to cause it to be believed that Z stole B's watch. This is defamation, unless it falls within one of the exceptions.
3. A draws a picture of Z running away with B's watch, intending it to be believed that Z stole B's watch. This is defamation, unless it falls within one of the exceptions.

Exceptions:
Imputation of truth public which good requires be making or publishing:
It is not defamation to impute anything, which is true concerning any person, if it be for the public good that the imputation should be made or published. Whether or not it is for the public good is a question of fact.

Public conduct of public servants:
It is not defamation to express in good faith any opinion whatever respecting the conduct of a public servant in the discharge of his public functions, or respecting his character, so far as his character appears in that conduct, and no further.

Conduct of any person touching any public question:
It is not defamation to express in good faith any opinion whatever respecting the conduct of any person touching any public question, and respecting his character, so far as his character appears in that conduct, and no further.

Publication of reports of proceedings of Courts:
It is not defamation to publish a substantially true report of the proceedings of a Court of Justice, or of the result of any such proceedings. A Justice of the Peace or other officer holding an enquiry in open Court preliminary to a trial in a Court of Justice is a Court within the meaning of the above section.

Merits of case decided in Court or conduct of witnesses and others concerned:
It is not defamation to express in good faith any opinion whatever respecting the merits of any case, civil or criminal, which has been decided by a Court of Justice, or respecting the conduct of any person as a party, witness or agent, in any such case, or respecting the character of such person, as far as his character appears in that, and no further.

1. A says, "I think Z's evidence on that trial is so contradictory that he must be stupid or dishonest." A is within this exception if he says this in good faith, in as much as the opinion which he expresses respects Z's character as it appears in Z's conduct as a witness, and no further.
2. But if A says, "I do not believe what Z asserted at that trial because I know him to be man without veracity;" A is not within this exception, inasmuch as the opinion which he expresses of Z's character, is an opinion not founded on Z's conduct as a witness

Merits of public performance:
It is not defamation to express in good faith any opinion respecting the merits of any performance which its author has submitted to the judgment of the public, or respecting the character of the author so far as his character appears in such performance, and no further. A performance may be submitted to the judgment of the public expressly or by acts on the part of the author, which imply such submission to the judgment of the public.

Illustrations:
1. A person, who publishes a book, submits that book to the judgment of the public.
2. An actor or singer, who appears on a public stage, submits his acting or singing to the judgment of the public.
3. A person, who makes a speech in public, submits that speech to the judgment of the public.
4. A says of a book published by Z- "Z's book is foolish. Z must be a weak man. Z's book is indecent. Z must be a man of impure mind". A is within the exception, if he says this in good faith, in as much as the opinion which he expresses of Z's character only so far as it appears in Z's book, and no further.
5. But if A says-"I am not surprised that Z's book is foolish and indecent, for he is a weak man and a libertine." A is not within this exception, inasmuch as the opinion which he expresses of Z's character is an opinion not founded on Z's book".

Censure passed in good faith by person having lawful authority over another:
It is not defamation in a person having over another any authority, either conferred by law or arising out of a lawful contract made with that other, to pass in good faith any censure on the conduct of that other in matters to which such lawful authority relates.
A Judge, censuring in good faith the conduct of a witness, or of an officer of the Court; a head of a department censuring in good faith those who are under his orders; a parent censuring in good faith a child in the presence of other children; a school-master, whose authority is derived from a parent, censuring in good faith a pupil in the presence of other pupils; a master censuring a servant in good faith for remissness in service; a banker censuring in good faith the cashier of his bank for the conduct of such cashier as such cashier- are within this exception.

Accusation preferred in good faith to authorized person:
It is not defamation to prefer in good faith an accusation against any person to any of those who have lawful authority over that person with respect to the subject matter of accusation.
For example, if A in good faith accuses Z before a Magistrate; if A in good faith complains of the conduct of Z's father- A is within this exception.

Imputation made in good faith by a person for protection of his or other's interests:
It is not defamation to make an imputation on the character of another provided that the imputation is made in good faith for the protection of the interests of the person making it, or of any other person, or for the public good.
For example, A, a shopkeeper, says to B, who manages his business- "Sell nothing to Z unless he pays you ready money, for I have no opinion of his honesty." A is within the exception, if he has made this imputation on Z in good faith for the protection of his own interests.

Caution intended for good of person to whom conveyed or for the public good:
It is not defamation to convey a caution, in good faith, to one person against another, provided that such caution is intended for the good of the person to whom it is conveyed, or of some person in whom that person is interested, or for the public good.

Punishment for defamation:
Whoever defames another shall be punished with simple imprisonment for a term, which may extend to two years, or with fine or with both.


IPC-415. Cheating

Whoever, by deceiving any person, fraudulently or dishonestly induces the person so deceived to deliver any property to any person, or to consent that any person shall retain any property, or intentionally induces the person so deceived to do or omit to do anything which he would not do or omit if he were not so deceived, and which act or omission causes or is likely to cause damage or harm to that person in body, mind, reputation or property, is said to "cheat".

Explanation- A dishonest concealment of facts is a deception within the meaning of this section.

IPC-504. Intentional insult with intent to provoke breach of the peace

Whoever intentionally insults, and thereby gives provocation to any person, intending or knowing it to be likely that such provocation will cause him to break the public peace, or to commit any other. offence, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to two years, or with fine, or with both.



Summons :

There are various processes to compel the appearance of an accused or any witness. They can be stated as follows;
1. Summons
2. Warrant of Arrest
3. Proclamation and Attachment

The summons is issued by the Court to compel the accused or the witness to appear before it or produce the necessary evidence. Every summons issued by the Court shall be in writing, in duplicate and it must be signed by the presiding officer of such Court or by such other officer as the High Court may, from time to time, by rule direct, and shall bear the seal of the Court.

Every summons shall be served by a police officer, or subject to such rules as the State Government may make in this behalf, by an officer of the Court issuing it or other public servant. The summons shall be served personally on the person summoned, by delivering or tendering to him one of the duplicates of the summons. Every person on whom a summons is so served shall sign a receipt on the back of the other duplicate, if so required by the serving officer. When a person sought to be summoned is employed abroad the Court can send summons to the concerned embassy for the official purpose.

Service of a summons on a corporation may be effected by serving it on the secretary, local manager or other principal officer of the corporation, or by letter sent by registered post, addressed to the chief officer of the corporation in India. Service of summons on Branch Manager shall be deemed to be service on the Bank itself.

When person summoned cannot be found:
Where the person summoned cannot be found, by the exercise of due diligence, be found, the summons may be served by leaving one of the duplicates for him with some adult male member of his family residing with him, and the person with whom the summons is so left shall, if so required by the serving officer, sign a receipt on the back of the other duplicate.
It should be noted that a servant is not a member of the family within the meaning of this section.

If service cannot by the exercise of due diligence be effected as mentioned above, the serving officer shall affix one of the duplicates of the summons to some conspicuous part of the house or homestead in which the person summoned ordinarily resides; and thereupon the Court, after making such inquiries as it thinks fit, may either declare that the summons has been duly served or order fresh service in such manner as it deems fit.

Summons on Government servant:
Where the person summoned is in the active service of the Government, the Court issuing the summons shall ordinarily send it in duplicate to the Head of the office, in which such person is employed and such head shall thereupon cause the summons to be served in the manner as explained above and shall return it to the Court under his signature with the endorsement as required by law.

When a Court desires that a summons issued by it shall be served at any place outside its local jurisdiction, it shall ordinarily send such summons in duplicate to a Magistrate within whose jurisdiction the person summoned resides.

Warrant of Arrest:
If the person summoned fails to appear before the Court the warrant of arrest will be issued against him. Every warrant of arrest issued by a Court shall be in writing and signed by the presiding officer of such Court and shall bear the seal of the Court. Every such warrant shall remain in force until it is cancelled by the Court, which issued it, or until it is executed.

Age of person to be detained: In Sanjay Suri Vs. Delhi Administration, the Supreme Court directed every magistrate or trial judge authorized to issue warrants for detention of prisoners to ensure that warrant of detention must specify the age of person to be detained, jail authorities can refuse to honour a warrant if the age of person remanded to jail custody is not indicated.

Any Court issuing a warrant for the arrest of any person may in its discretion direct by endorsement on the warrant that, if such person executes a bond with sufficient sureties for his attendance before the Court at a specified time and thereafter until otherwise directed by the Court, the officer to whom the warrant is directed shall take such security and shall release such person from custody. The endorsement shall state
1. Number of sureties.
2. The amount in which they and the person for whose arrest the warrant is issued, are to be bound respectively.
3. The time at which he is to appear before the Court.

Whenever security is taken under this section, the officer to whom the warrant is directed shall forward the bond to the Court.

Warrants to whom directed: A warrant of arrest shall ordinarily be directed to one or more police officers; but the Court issuing such a warrant may, if its immediate execution is necessary and no police officer is immediately available, direct it to any other person or persons, and such person or persons shall execute the same. When a warrant is directed to more officers or persons than one, it may be executed by all, or by any one or more of them.

The Chief Judicial Magistrate or a Magistrate of the First Class may direct a warrant to any person within his local jurisdiction for the arrest of any escaped convict, proclaimed offender or of any person, who is accused of a non-bailable offence and is evading arrest. Such person shall acknowledge in writing the receipt of warrant, and shall execute it if the person for whose arrest it was issued, is in, or enters on, any land or other property under his charge. When the person against whom such warrant is issued is arrested, he shall be made over with the warrant to the nearest police officer, who shall cause him to be taken before a magistrate having jurisdiction in the case, unless security is taken.

The police officer or other person executing a warrant of arrest shall without unnecessary delay bring the person arrested before the Court before which he is required by law to produce such person. Such delay shall not, in any case, exceed twenty-four hours exclusive of the time necessary for the journey from the place of arrest to the magistrate's court.

Where warrant may be executed: A warrant of arrest may be executed at any place in India.

Warrant forwarded for execution outside jurisdiction: When a warrant is to be executed outside the local jurisdiction of the Court issuing it, such Court may, instead of directing the warrant to a police officer within its jurisdiction, forwarded by post or otherwise to any Executive Magistrate or District Superintendent of Police or Commissioner of Police within the local limits of whose jurisdiction it is to be executed; and the Executive Magistrate or District Superintendent or Commissioner shall endorse his name thereon, and if practicable, cause it to be executed in the manner hereinbefore provided.

Warrant directed to police officer for execution outside jurisdiction: When a warrant directed to a police officer is to be executed beyond the local jurisdiction of the Court issuing the same, he shall ordinarily take it for endorsement either to an Executive Magistrate or to a police officer not below the rank of an officer in charge of a police station, within the local limits of whose jurisdiction the warrant is to be executed.

Such Magistrate or police officer shall endorse his name thereon and such endorsement shall be sufficient authority to the police officer to whom the warrant is directed to execute the same, and the local police shall, if so required, assist such officer in executing such warrant.

Procedure by Magistrate before whom such person arrested is brought: The Executive Magistrate or District Superintendent of Police or Commissioner of Police shall, if the person arrested appears to be the person intended by the Court, which issued the warrant, direct his removal in custody to such Court. It should be noted that the offence is bailable, and such person is ready and willing to give surety to the satisfaction of such magistrate, District Superintendent or Commissioner, or a direction has been endorsed on the warrant and such person is ready and willing to give the security required by such direction, the Magistrate, District Superintendent or Commissioner shall take such bail or security, as the case may be, and forward the bond to the Court which issued that warrant.
If the offence is non-bailable one, it shall be lawful for the Chief Judicial Magistrate, or the Sessions Judge, of the district in which the arrest is made on consideration of the information and the documents, to release such person on bail.


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manushi@nda.vsnl.net.in [ Manushi Email. ]
Men Against Violence and Abuse (MAVA) Mahim - Bombay Ph:556415 8401652.
Protection of Menís Rights Organisation (POMERO)

Grounds for Divorce

In most Western nations, there are approximately 16 distinct reasons for which divorces are granted. In India, however, only five main reasons are generally accepted as sufficient grounds for divorce (Choudhary 90).

Adultery. While no formal definition of adultery exists, it does have "a fairly established meaning in matrimonial law" (Diwan 171), namely "the voluntary sexual intercourse of a married man or woman with a person other than the offender's wife or husband" (Choudhary 91). While the law considers it valid grounds for either sex, adulterous women are "judged more harshly" than men (Kapur and Cossman 102). The various religious regulations a e not unanimous on this issue. The law regarding Hindus allows divorce to be granted on the grounds of infidelity of either husband or wife. The Christian law, however, would traditionally not have granted a divorce to a woman solely on the grounds of adultery. She would have had to prove another violation, such as cruelty (Kapur and Cossman 102-4). A recent Bombay High Court decision "recognised cruelty and desertion as independent grounds for the dissolution of a Christian marriage," striking down a section of the law that allowed for an unconstitutional distinction between the sexes (Raiker-Mhatre 1).

Desertion. The three main components of desertion are the "disruption of cohabitation, absence of just or reasonable cause and their combination throughout three years" before the abandoned spouse may petition for a divorce (Virdi 71). There also must be an obvious intent on the part of the offending spouse to remain permanently apart from the other. This statute also applies to cases in which a spouse has been heard from for at least seven years (Choudhary 91).

Cruelty. As with adultery, "the definition of the type of behavior that constitutes cruelty varies according to the gender of the petitioner" of the divorce. "Despite the fact that cruelty is often equally available to husbands and wives, the way in which the law is interpreted and applied suggests that women and men are evaluated by rather different standards" (Kapur and Cossman 105). This category includes both physical and mental abuse and neglect (Choudhary 91). A court decision made in early May 1997 made cruelty sufficient grounds for a Christian woman to obtain a; previously, the law required both adultery and cruelty to be proven. The national Indian Christian community seems to have embraced this judgment (Raikar-Mhatre 1-2.

Impotency. This refers to the physical inability of the couple to consummate the marriage (Choudhary 91) or the refusal by one spouse to do so (Diwan 136). Some cases have established that sterility can be construed to mean non-consummation if the other partner is not aware of the condition before the marriage (Diwan 139).

Chronic Disease. Both mental and physical illnesses are included in this category, as well as sexually transmitted diseases (Choudhary 92). Not all religions recognize identical diseases as grounds for divorce. Christians and Parsis do not allow divorce for a sexually transmitted disease or leprosy while the other communities do (Diwan 204-5).

CHRISTIAN MARRIAGE LAW

The Indian Christian Marriage Act, 1872, relates to solemnisation of marriage of persons professing Christian religion. The Act provides that any marriage solemnised otherwise than in accordance with the Act shall be void. Under Section 5 of the Act marriages can be solemnised by -

  1. a person who has received episcopal ordination;
  2. any clergyman of the Chruch of scotland;
  3. any Minister of Religion licensed under the Act.,
  4. a Marriage Registrar appointed under section 7 of the Act and
  5. any person licensed under section 9 to grant certificates of marriage.

Marriage under Christian Law is in the nature of contract and hence there should be a free and voluntary consent between the parties. When there is a minor, as defined in the Act, the consent of father or guardian is necessary. Marriage is not permissible between the parties who are within the prohibited degrees of relationship under section 19 of the Act. There is no legal impediment for marriage between a catholic and a Protestant. By marriage, the husband and wife become one person, i.e., the legal existence of the women is incorporated and consolidated into that of the husband.

The law regarding divorce, judicial separation and allied matters is contained in the Indian Divorce Act, 1869. Under section 18 of the Act either spouse can seek divorce on the grounds contained in section 19 which reads as follows:-

Section 19: Grounds for decree of divorce :-

  1. That the respondent was impotent at the time of marriage and institution of the suit;
  2. That the parties are within the prohibited degree of consanguinity or affinity;
  3. That either party was a lunatic or idiot at the time or marriage.
  4. That the former husband or wife of either party was living at the time of marriage and the said marriage was then in force.

Nothing shall affect the jurisdiction of the High court to make decrees of nullity of marriage on the ground that the consent of either party was obtained by force or fraud.

Under Section 10, the wife can seek the marriage be dissolved on the ground-

  1. that her husband exchanged professing Christianity and gone through a form of marriage with another woman;
  2. incestuous adultery;
  3. bigamy with adultery;
  4. marriage with another woman with adultery;
  5. rape, sodomy or bestiality;
  6. adultery coupled with cruelty and
  7. adultery coupled with desertion without reasonable cause for two years or more. Under section 11, in cases of allegations of adultery, the adulterer should be made a party. Pendente alimony may be granted under section 36 of the Act.


RESTITUTION OF CONJUGAL RIGHTS - (Right to stay together)

If either the husband or the wife, without reasonable excuses, withdraws from the society of the other, the aggrieved party may approach the Court for restitution of conjugal rights.

         The decree of restitution of conjugal rights cannot be executed by forcing the party who has withdrawn from the society from the other to stay with the person who institutes Petition for restitution. The decree can be executed only by attachment of the properties of the judgement debtor. The practice has shown that the decree of restitution is a paper decree.

         However, if the decree of restitution of conjugal right is not honoured for a period of more than one year, subsequent to the date of the decree, it becomes a ground for divorce.

JUDICIAL SEPARATION: Legal Separation without divorce

        Either party to the marriage may present a petition on any of the grounds stated in the provisions for divorce, praying for a decree of judicial separation. A judicial separation is a legal way to stay separate from the spouse, without obtaining a decree of divorce. It also helps in cases to defend a petition for restitution of conjugal rights. A judicially separated spouse cannot be given a meaning to include a spouse merely living separately, and who has not obtained a decree for judicial separation.

        In case, there has been no resumption of cohabitation between the parties to the marriage for a period of one year or upwards, after the passing of the decree for judicial separation, it shall be a ground for a divorce.



Some Related Links i Found on the net.
Eves India - Dowry Harassment
http://www.ebc-india.com/lawyer/digest/03_4/034_675.htm
http://news.indiainfo.com/publicopinion/dowry.html
http://www.hinduonnet.com/thehindu/2003/06/11/stories/2003061108840300.htm
http://taipeitimes.com/News/edit/archives/2003/07/07/2003058417
http://news.indiainfo.com/publicopinion/dowry-reactions.html
http://desitalk.newsindia-times.com/2003/07/04/books18-dowry.html
http://messages.evesindia.com/ubb/Forum8/HTML/000002.html
http://news.indiainfo.com/2003/08/31/31dowry.html
http://search.indiainfo.com
http://indiafamily.net
Gokul Homepage
http://indiafamily.net/talk
http://www.hinduonnet.com
http://www.outlookindia.com
http://anticorruption.tripod.com/actsandlaws.htm
http://indiafamily.net/talk/messages/54/1647.html?999111817
http://www.atimes.com/atimes/South_Asia/EF21Df03.html
http://www.keralanext.com/matri/divorce.asp
http://www.soulkurry.com
Letter To President of India
http://www.indianexpress.com/messages
http://www.indianexpress.com/full_story
India NGO`s
www.countercurrents.org/gender
Manushi Report
HELP line---------
Men Support Line.

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