Tuesday, July 7, 2009

SC: Petty matrimonial spats not covered by section 498A, IPC

Read this recent Supreme court judgment:
SC: Petty matrimonial spats not covered by section 498A, IPC

Salient points from above:
1. A bench comprising Justices Mukundakam Sharma and B S Chauhan, dropping the charges of cruelty and harassment against a husband, noted, ‘Petty quarrels cannot be termed as cruelty to attract the provisions of Section 498A, IPC.
2. Causing mental torture to the extent that it becomes unbearable may be termed as cruelty. Cruelty, for the purpose of Section 498A, IPC, is to be established in the context of Section 498A as it may be different from other statutory provisions.’ The 15-page judgment added, ‘It is to be determined/inferred by considering the conduct of the man, weighing the gravity or seriousness of his acts and to find out whether it is likely to drive the woman to commit suicide etc.
3. It is to be established that the woman has been subjected to cruelty continuously/persistently or at least in close proximity of the time of lodging of the complaint.’ Justice Chauhan spoke for the bench ....
4. Thus in our opinion, all the three courts below erred in not considering the case in the correct perspective. The findings so recorded by the courts below may be relevant for granting relief in a matrimonial dispute like divorce etc but could not bring home the charge under Section 498A, IPC.’

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