Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Changes in the dowry law ( IPC 498a ) will shut out frivolous complaints – commoners’ viewpoint

Changes in the dowry law will shut out frivolous complaints

The Supreme Court’s decision to ask the government to reconsider the anti-dowry law — Section 498A of the Indian Penal Code — is welcome (Change dowry law: SC to govt, August 15). It is well-known that most dowry-related

accusations invariably lead to the imprisoning of the husband and his relatives. The draconian law does not have any space for judicial inquiry and relies solely on complaints. It should be withdrawn. There is an urgent need to re-examine other anti-dowry laws too, which are no better. At the same time, one wonders why courts do not put women complainants in jail for fraudulent cases that are filed only to harass husbands. There have been several instances when women have filed the cases, made their husbands and relatives appear before the courts and then have either failed to pursue them or withdrawn the cases later. Imagine the mental and physical torture that husbands have been made to undergo! Why can’t the courts jail the complainants for misleading the police, the judiciary and people?

Devinder Sharma, via email

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