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Law of Cruelty in India

Law of Cruelty in India

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Description
Violence against women is not a myth, but a reality. It exists and exists everywhere. Violence against women is rooted in unequal power relations between men and women in society and can be understood within a gender framework. The concept of equality between male and female was almost unknown to us before enactment of the Constitution of India. Women are conditioned from birth to believe that they are inferior to men. They accept the beatings from their husbands as their fate and continue in violent relations for myriad reasons. Many studies of dowry-related violence gives rise to certain questions, one being, is the unfulfilled demand for dowry the only reason for dowry-related violence and death. The system of dowry in marriages has been haunting our society for a long time. This is a social curse which has gone unchecked, though time and again it has tormented the people in general. It is like a scar on a healthy society.
Cruelty against women means any act which result in or likely to result in, physical, mental, psychological harm or suffering to women, including threats of such acts or any wilful conduct which is likely to drive the woman to commit suicide. Whether one spouse has been guilty of cruelty to the other is essentially as question of fact. The impact of complaints, accusations or taunts on a person amounting to cruelty depends on various factors like the sensitivity of the individual victim concerned, the social background the environment, education etc. The term cruelty has been defined in the Explanation to section 498A, IPC. Hence, it is not every cruelty that is made punishable but only the cruelty as defined under the Explanation. Explanation (a) provides that cruelty means 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 mental or physical) of the woman.
Many marriages which could have been saved by objective, sensitive and sensible handling have been ruined because of misuse of certain penal provisions. Rather than mending relations or making the husbands "behave", or "bring them around" rash resort to police and judicial authorities have ended the relationship. Even authorities have now started looking at women's complaints with some suspicion. While all sympathy and support was with a woman a few years back, it is unfortunate that credibility is no longer attached to her complaints. While safeguarding her interest, life, property and mental peace still needs to be on top of the agenda in matrimony, the need to ensure that husbands and their families are not needlessly and falsely implicated cannot be underscored. Laws should assist the victimized woman but they should not assist and abet harassment by her to the husband and the relatives of the husband.
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 Contents
Chapter 1 Introduction
Chapter 2 Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961 - As in Instrument of Safeguard Against Cruelity
Chapter 3 Curelty under Section 498A, IPC, 1860
Chapter 4 Matrimonial Cruelty under Personal Laws
Chapter 5 Role of the Relatives of the Husband for Cruelty and Demand of Dowry
Chapter 6 The Abuse of Process of Law under section 498A, IPC,1860
Chapter 7 Role of NCW and Crime Aganist Women cell and Study of Data
               Pertaining to Cruelty aganist Women
Chapter 8 Recent Judicial Trends on law of Cruelty
Chapter 9 Investigation, Trail and Role of Evidence in Dowry Death
Chapter 10 Conclusion and Suggestions
Table of Cases
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