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Rekha Devi & Ors vs State Of Bihar & Anr on 11 May, 2018

IN THE HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE AT PATNA
Criminal Miscellaneous No.51839 of 2013
Arising Out of PS. Case No.-1872 Year-2010 Thana- SAHARSA COMPLAINT CASE
District- Saharsa

1. Rekha Devi Wife of Suryanarayan Chaudhary Resident of
Village- Diwanganj, P.S.- Pratapganj, District- Supaul

2. Suryanarayan Chaudhary Son of Late Ramji Chaudhary Resident
Of Village- Diwanganj, P.S.- Pratapganj, District- Supaul

3. Punam Devi Wife of Pappu Chaudhary Resident of Village-
Dharahara, P.S.- Raghopur, District- Supaul

… … Petitioner/s
Versus

1. The State of Bihar

2. Usha Kumari Wife of Ajay Chaudhary Resident of Village- Dharahara, P.S.-
Raghopur, District- Supaul

… … Opposite Party/s

Appearance :

For the Petitioner/s : Mr. Dinesh Maharaj
Mr. Satish Kumar Singh
For the Opposite Party no. 2 : Mr. Amarnath Jha
For the State : Mr. Jharkhandi Upadhyay.

CORAM: HONOURABLE MR. JUSTICE PRAKASH CHANDRA
JAISWAL
ORAL JUDGMENT
Date : 11-05-2018

Heard learned counsel for the petitioners, learned

counsel for the O.P. no. 2 as well as learned APP for the State.

2. This application under Section 482 of the Code

of Criminal Procedure has been filed for quashing the order

dated 05.09.2011 passed by Sub Divisional Judicial Magistrate,

Saharsa, in Complaint Case no. 1872 of 2010, whereby the

learned Magistrate finding making out prima facie case under

Section 498A of the Indian Penal Code and Section 4 of the

Dowry Prevention Act against the accused persons including the
Patna High Court Cr.Misc. No.51839 of 2013 dt.11-05-2018
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petitioners, ordered to issue summons against them.

3. Factual matrix of the case is that O.P. no. 2

(Usha Kumari) filed Complaint Case no. 1872 of 2010 against

seven accused persons named in the complaint petition

including the petitioners under Sections 498A, 323, 379, 504 of

the Indian Penal Code and Section 3/4 of D.P. Act with the case,

in succinct, that marriage of the O.P. no. 2 was solemnized with

accused Ajay Chaudhary on 29.04.2002. After marriage, she

went to her marital house on vidai, but the accused persons were

not satisfied with the articles and gift provided in the marriage

by her maternal people and they started passing comment and

demanded Rs. 50,000/- for running business. As her father

failed to cough up their aforesaid demand, all the accused

persons started subjecting her to various sorts of torture and

cruelty over the said demand. Subsequently, her father anyhow

managed Rs. 30,000/- and accorded to the accused persons,

whereupon they allowed the O.P. no. 2 to go with her father to

her maternal house after one year. She became pregnant couple

of times, but due to atrocity meted out to her by the accused

persons, there was miscarriage. Her husband took her to

Rajasthan at his service place, but he continuously subjected her

to torture there at the instance of the other accused persons and
Patna High Court Cr.Misc. No.51839 of 2013 dt.11-05-2018
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finally they drove her out of her marital house snatching her

belongings.

4. O.P. no. 2 examined herself on S.A. and also

examined three witnesses during course of inquiry.

5. Learned Magistrate after perusing the complaint

petition and material available on records, passed the impugned

order as detailed in the earlier paragraph.

6. It is submitted by learned counsel for the

petitioners that petitioner no. 1 happens to be sister-in-law while

petitioner no. 2 brother-in-law of the complainant. They are

living separately from the complainant and petitioner no. 3 is

the gotiya of the complainant and marriage of petitioner no. 3

was solemnized around three years later to the marriage of

complainant. Husband of the complainant is living in Rajasthan

in connection with his service and petitioners have no concern

with the affairs of the complainant and her husband. They never

made any demand and subjected the complainant to cruelty.

They have been falsely implicated in the case as they happen to

be relatives of husband of the complainant in order to harass

them. There is no specific allegation of any demand and torture

against them. Husband of the complainant had also filed a

petition for restitution of conjugal rights vide M.A. no. 57 of
Patna High Court Cr.Misc. No.51839 of 2013 dt.11-05-2018
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2010 against the complainant, but as the complainant did not

turn up in the said case, it proceeded ex parte against her.

Hence, the proceeding against the petitioners is nothing but an

abuse of process of the Court. So, the impugned order is liable

to be quashed.

7. On the other hand, learned counsel for the O.P.

no. 2 and learned APP for the State submitted that all the

accused persons including the petitioners demanded dowry and

subjected the O.P. no. 2 to various sorts of torture over the said

demand resulting miscarriage of the O.P. no. 2 couple of times.

Husband of complainant also subjected her to torture and

cruelty taking her to Rajasthan, at his place of service at the

instance of petitioners and other accused persons, and finally the

accused persons drove her out of her marital house snatching

her belongings, and learned lower court considering all the facts

and circumstances of the case, S.A. of complainant and

testimony of witnesses examined during course of inquiry, after

making proper inquiry has taken cognizance against all the

accused persons including the petitioners, which is liable to be

upheld.

8. From perusal of record, it appears that Petitioner

no. 1 happens to be married sister-in-law while petitioner no. 2
Patna High Court Cr.Misc. No.51839 of 2013 dt.11-05-2018
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is the brother-in-law of the complainant (O.P. no. 2) and

husband of petitioner no. 1 and they are living separately from

the complainant as her husband and his parents are resident of

village Dharahara, P.S.- Raghopur, District- Supaul

while the aforesaid two petitioners are resident of

village Diwanganj, P.S.- Pratapganj, District- Supaul

as evident from the complaint petition. Petitioner no. 3

was not in existence in the marital house of the O.P.

no. 2 at the time of initial demand of dowry and

torture meted out to the O.P. no. 2 as she was married

three years later to the aforesaid occurrence. From

perusal of complaint petition, it appears that there is

no specific allegation against the aforesaid petitioners

rather allegations are general and omnibus in nature

and they also do not appear to be beneficiary of

demand of dowry.

9. Hon’ble Apex Court in Geeta Mehrotra

and Another vs. State of U.P. and Another reported in

(2012)10 SCC 741 and Preeti Gupta and Another Vs.

State of Jharkhand and Another reported in (2010) 7

SCC 667 has been pleased to rule that there should be

a clear allegation against relatives of the husband and
Patna High Court Cr.Misc. No.51839 of 2013 dt.11-05-2018
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vague and omnibus allegation would not be sufficient

to compel them to undergo agony of the trial.

10. Hon’ble Apex Court in Monju Roy and

Others Vs. State of West Bengal reported in (2015) 13

SCC 693 has been pleased to observe that while we do

not find any ground to interfere with the view taken by

the courts below that the deceased was subjected to

harassment on account of non-fulfillment of dowry

demand, we do not find any merit in the submission

that possibility of naming all the family members by

way of exaggeration is not ruled out”. Hon’ble Apex

Court in Kans Raj Vs. State of Punjab reported in

(2000) 5 SCC 207 has been pleased to observe that a

tendency has, however, developed for roping in all

relations of the in-laws of the deceased wives in the

matters of dowry deaths which, if not discouraged, is

likely to affect the case of the prosecution even

against the real culprits. In their over enthusiasm and

anxiety to seek conviction for maximum people, the

parents of the deceased have been found to be making

efforts for involving other relations which ultimately

weaken the case of the prosecution even against the
Patna High Court Cr.Misc. No.51839 of 2013 dt.11-05-2018
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real accused as appears to have happened in the instant

case. Hon’ble Apex Court in Arnesh Kumar Vs. State

of Bihar and Another reported in (2014) 8 SCC 273

has been pleased to observe that there is a phenomenal

increase in matrimonial disputes in recent years. The

institution of marriage is greatly revered in this

country. Section 498-A IPC was introduced with

avowed object to combat the menace of harassment to

a woman at the hands of her husband and his relatives.

The fact that Section 498-A IPC is a cognizable and

non-bailable offence has lent it a dubious place of

pride amongst the provisions that are used as weapons

rather than shield by disgruntled wives. The simplest

way to harass is to get the husband and his relatives

arrested under this provision. In a quite number of

cases, bedridden grandfathers and grandmothers of the

husbands, their sisters living abroad for decades are

arrested. In the said case, the Supreme Court has

cautioned the courts with regard to proceeding against

in-laws and distant relatives of the husband of the wife

involved in the offence under Section 498-A of the IPC

and other relevant offences. This High Court in
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Brijesh Das @ Brijesh Kumar Das Ors. Vs. The

State of Bihar Anr. reported in 2012(2) PLJR 545

has also held that there is specific allegation made

against husband and no statement that other relatives

assaulted the complainant. Allegations made against

petitioner nos. 2 to 6 are vague and omnibus

allegation made against the relatives of the husband,

would not be sufficient to put them on a trial and set

aside the cognizance order against the petitioner nos. 2

to 6 who happen to be in-laws of the complaint.

11. In view of the aforesaid facts and

circumstances of the case and the aforesaid case laws,

the order taking cognizance against these petitioners,

in my considered opinion is nothing, but an abuse of

process of the Court. Accordingly, this petition is

allowed and the impugned order is quashed.

(Prakash Chandra Jaiswal, J)
rohit/-

AFR/NAFR AFR
CAV DATE N.A.
Uploading Date 16-05-2018
Transmission Date 16-05-2018

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