The Madhya Pradesh High Court, Gwalior Bench in its order dated April 07, 2022 quashed the FIR filed by a wife against her in-laws under Section 498-A IPC, observing that the same was filed ‘to wreak vengeance’ and ‘with a revengeful intent in order to pressurize and harass her in-laws’.
Marriage between parties took place in December 2016. After disputes between couple and wife’s alleged misconduct and voluntarily leaving the matrimonial home, husband filed for divorce in August 2018.
FIR Lodged After Allegations by Wife:
In August 2019 complainant wife along with her brother, made a written complaint at the local Police Station stating that her father had given sufficient dowry and also spent Rs 15 lakh towards her marriage. Besides this, the bride’s family gave Rs 15 lakh cash at the time of ”Tika” ceremony.
After some days of her marriage, her in-laws started demanding dowry and also, committed ”maarpeet” and subsequently in January 2018, she was thrown out of the house by her in-laws. Although her father had called her husband and in-laws many times, and even a complaint before the Conciliation Centre did not yield results.
Wife further alleged that her husband, brother-in-law/Devar, father-in-law and sister-in-law/Nanand, were demanding Rs 15 lakh for purchase of a flat and if she did not fulfill the same, they could not keep her in the matrimonial and would kill her. On the basis of these allegations, aforesaid FIR had been lodged.
Defense by Husband’s Family (Petitioners)
Learned counsel appearing for the petitioners submitted that the entire allegations were completely false and FIR itself was lodged with clear motive to harass and pressurize the petitioners. The complainant wife is a quarrelsome lady and used to quarrel with her in-laws as she had no interest to live peacefully with them and also she did not want to live with her husband.
The attitude as well as conduct of complainant towards her in-laws is not good since the date of marriage. In this regard, a complaint to the SP as well as DM, Ashok Nagar had been made. On account of the bad conduct and behaviour of complainant, her husband subsequently filed a petition under Section 13 of the Hindu Marriage Act for dissolution of marriage before Principal Judge, Family Court Aligarh (UP) on 13/08/2018.
The petitioner No.3 who is the father-in-law of complainant, has also filed a complaint before the Court of AJCM, Aligarh on 27-07-2019 under Sections 406, 504 of IPC against the complainant and her family.
Thus, as a counter-blast, the complainant wife has falsely lodged the present Dowry FIR against the petitioners. It is further submitted that the marriage of petitioner no.4, who is sister-in-law of complainant is living separately at Bhopal – whose marriage was performed prior to the date of marriage of complainant.
Per contra, the Respondent wife and the State submitted that other pending proceedings before Applicants and the Respondent were not an impediment for her to lodge the FIR for the alleged offences committed by the Applicants.
They asserted that the offence under Section 498A IPC is a continuous offence and cause of action in the present case arose after the marriage of the Respondent as her in-laws were harassing her by demanding huge sum of dowry. Hence, they prayed for dismissal of the application.
Madhya Pradesh High Court
Justice R.K. Shrivastava was dealing with an application under Section 482 CrPC moved by the Applicants seeking directions of the Court to quash the FIR registered against them for offences punishable under:
- Section 498A
- Section 506
- Section 34 IPC
…and the consequential criminal proceedings against them.
To strengthen their contentions, the Applicants relied on the observations of the Apex Court in the recently decided case of Kahkashan Kausar alias Sonam & Ors.v. State of Bihar & Ors.
Considering the submissions of the parties, documents on record and further examining the observations of the Supreme Court in relevant cases, the Court observed that the present application deserved to be allowed-
On perusal of the impugned FIR as well as the documents available on record and in the light of the judgments passed by Hon’ble Apex Court, it appears that the allegations made against petitioners are general and omnibus, therefore, they cannot be prosecuted u/S 498A of IPC.
In the case at hand, earlier a petition under Section 13 of Hindu Marriage Act was filed on 13/03/2018 by husband of complainant and on 27/09/2019, a complaint was also filed by father-in-law of complainant where-after, the conciliation proceedings could not be succeeded due to difference of thoughts whatsoever between complainant and her husband.
Present FIR has been lodged on 01/08/2019 by complainant is nothing, but only to wreck vengeance so also with a revengeful intent in order to pressurize and harass the petitioners.
The Court further noted-
Upon consideration of entire facts and circumstances of the case coupled with the fact that respondent No.2 (wife) has left her matrimonial home voluntarily without any rhyme and it is a fault on the part of the complainant to live separately prior to filing of the impugned FIR and in absence of specific allegation of demand of dowry or harassment, the impugned FIR deserves to be quashed.
With the aforesaid observations, the Court quashed the impugned FIR against the Applicants along with the other subsequent proceedings initiated therefrom and accordingly, the application was allowed.
There are NO IMPLICATIONS whatsoever, after several years in court and harassment faced by husband and his in-laws due to a false criminal case by wife. Also, this is just a bail order and the husband is not free from any of his liabilities towards wife as per Hindu Marriage Act.
Leave your thoughts on how our system is completely Anti-Men that labels husbands and their families as criminals on mere complaint by wife.
READ ORDER | "Wife Filed False #498A Case To Wreak Vengeance With Revengeful Intent to Pressurise & Harass In-Laws": Madhya Pradesh HC— Men’s Day Out (@MensDayOutIndia) April 18, 2022
▪️Wife leaves home voluntarily
▪️Husband files Divorce Aug 2018
▪️Wife files Dowry Case Aug 2019https://t.co/1T86VCLFSa
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