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Pavitra Prabhakar (MBA)     27 April 2013

Judgement required

Can anyone please share the recent judgment of Andhra Pradesh high court regarding the quashing of 498a complain made by a woman"

Woman loses dowry case against husband, in-laws

https://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2013-04-20/hyderabad/38692611_1_dowry-harassment-case-husband-rajahmundry

thanks



Learning

 1 Replies

Nadeem Qureshi (Advocate/ nadeemqureshi1@gmail.com)     28 April 2013

Dear Victim

 Read the below

 

THE HON'BLE SRI JUSTICE R.KANTHA RAO        

 

CRIMINAL PETITION NO.177 OF 2010     

 

21.03.2013 

 

Tummala Ramnarayana, S/o.Venkata Jagga Rao, 65 years, Retired Employee, 91/12,     

M.V.P. Colony, Vizag & 4 others 

 

The State of A.P., represented by its Public Prosecutor, High Court of A.P.,

Hyderabad through the Station House Officer, Prakasanagaram P.S., Rajahmundry &   

another

 

<GIST: 

 

>HEAD NOTE:    

 

Counsel for Petitioners: S.R.SANKU 

 

Counsel for Respondent No.1: ADDITIONAL PUBLIC PROSECUTOR         

 

Counsel for Respondent No.2: None appeared  

 

?Cases referred

(2010) 7 SCC 667 

 

ORDER:  

        This criminal petition is filed under Section 482 of Cr.P.C to quash the

proceedings in C.C. No.262 of 2009 on the file of the Court of the II Additional

Judicial First Class Magistrate, Rajahmundry.

        Heard the learned counsel appearing for the petitioners-A2 to A6 and the

learned Additional Public Prosecutor representing the State. The second

respondent-de facto complainant though served with notice has not made her

appearance either in person or through a counsel.

        The brief facts of the case are as follows:

        The marriage of the second respondent-de facto complainant was performed 

with A1 at Rajahmundry six years prior to filing of the complaint.  It is stated

that at the time of marriage, the mother and brother of the second respondent

paid Rs.15,00,000/- to the first accused towards dowry apart from giving silver

and gold articles. Their marriage was consummated. The second respondent joined 

the first accused for leading conjugal life at Visakhapatnam where he was an

employee. After some time, the second respondent came to know that the first

accused was indebted to so many people and informed the said fact to her brother

and mother. Subsequently, the first accused and the second respondent were 

brought to Rajahmundry by the mother and brother of the second respondent to

secure some employment to the first accused. While so, on 27.06.2009 the second 

respondent and the first accused blessed with a female child by name Nikita.

According to the second respondent, the first accused was not interested in

employment and made debts in Rajahmundry.  When the second respondent questioned     

him about his attitude, he grew wild, beat her and harassed her to get

additional dowry of Rs.5,00,000/- from her mother and brother to clear of the

debts at Visakhapatnam. After some time, the first accused came back to

Visakhapatnam stating that he would secure a job there.  On 20.12.2008, when the

second respondent came to the house of the first accused to join him, her in-

laws rejected to receive her and directed to go back to her parents house. In

spite of their rejection, the second respondent stayed at Visakhapatnam for 10

days. But during the said period, the first accused did not visit their house.

It is stated that A2 to A6 used to abuse and harass her mentally.   They stopped

providing food to her and her daughter Nikhita also due to which the second

respondent suffered ill health and returned to Rajahmundry on 02.01.2009.

        In the mean time, on a particular day, A1 to A6 visited the parents house

of the second respondent, abused her in filthy language for coming out of her

matrimonial home without informing them and beat her with hands. A2 slapped on

her cheek and A4 & A5 caught hold tuft of her hair and dragged her on steps and

her mother-in-law-A3 fisted blows on the second respondent. In the mean time,

the brother and mother of the second respondent came and rescued her. 

Thereafter, all the accused left the parents house of the second respondent and

demanded her for additional dowry.

Thereafter, according to the second respondent, she approached the police and

informed the incident and the police advised them to approach the Court and on

that she filed a private complaint before the II Additional Judicial First Class

Magistrate, Rajahmundry. The learned Magistrate forwarded the private complaint

to the Station House Officer, Prakasanagaram, Rajahmundry under Section 156 (3) 

Cr.P.C for investigation. The police after conducting investigation filed charge

sheet against the accused under Section 498-A, 506, 323 read with 34 IPC.

        Among the petitioners, petitioners 1 and 2 are the parents of A1,

petitioner No.3 is brother of A1, petitioner No.4 is the wife of petitioner

No.3, petitioner No.5 is sister of petitioner No.2.  Almost all the close

relatives of the first accused are implicated in the present case.

        Sri S.R.Sanku, learned counsel appearing for the petitioners submitted

that in fact the disputes are between the second respondent and her husband-1st

accused, and the petitioners-A2 to A6 are no way responsible, but they were

falsely implicated in the present case by the second respondent by inventing an

incident alleged to have occurred at Rajahmundry.  According to the learned

counsel, involving all the close relatives of A1 is nothing but abuse of process

of law and he sought indulgence of this Court to quash the proceedings against

them in exercise of powers u/s 482 Cr.P.C.  In support of his submissions, he

relied on the decision of the Supreme Court in Preeti Gupta & another vs. State

of Jharkhand & another1 wherein the Supreme Court apart from expressing serious

concern about the genuine cases of dowry harassment depricated the practice of

creating exaggerated versions of small incidents.  While filing complaints in

matrimonial matters the Supreme Court stressed the need to scrutinize the

allegations with great care and circumspection, especially against husband's

relatives who were living in different cities and never visited or rarely

visited the matrimonial home of the complainant.  The Supreme Court also felt

the need for serious relook at the entire provision 498-A of I.P.C. by the

Parliament.  The Supreme Court further emphasized the need of social

responsibility and obligation of the members of Bar and Bench to maintain social

fibre of family life.

It is the duty of this Court while acting under Section 482 Cr.P.C to scrutinize

the allegations in their complaint to find out whether there is any prima facie

truth in the allegations levelled against the accused.

        On thorough scrutiny and circumspection of the allegations, if the Court

finds that they are only invented purposefully to involve the relations of the

husband of the de facto complainant, it has to exercise discretionary powers

under Section 482 Cr.P.C to quash the proceedings.

        If the allegations against the accused create doubt, that in fact the

disputes are really between the de facto complainant and her husband. In the

instant case, a casual reference has been made to the petitioners that they were

harassing and abusing the second respondent-de facto complainant mentally. 

The main incident in this case seems to be that on a particular day all the

accused went to the parents house of the second respondent- de facto complainant

in the absence of her mother and brother, abused her for coming out of the

matrimonial home without informing them, demanded additional dowry and beat her 

indiscriminately.

The petitioners are residents of Vizag.  All of them went to Rajahmundry and

allegedly assaulted the de facto complainant at her parents house where she had

several relatives and friends.  The allegations obviously seems to be

improbable.  It would appear that to rope in all the close relatives of her

husband, the second respondent invented the incident and filed a complaint in

the Magistrate's Court at Rajahmundry.  The charge sheet is nothing but the

replica of the complaint filed by the de facto complainant before the

Magistrate.  The aforesaid incident in my view seems to have been created only

for the purpose of involving the petitioners, who are close relatives of the

husband of the de facto complainant.  The main incident in this case which was

alleged against the petitioners appears to be

un-natural and improbable. If the case is allowed to be continued against the

petitioners, and to face the trial and it would cause substantial injustice and

undue hardship to the petitioners.

For the aforesaid reasons, the entire proceedings in C.C.No.262 of 2009 are

quashed. 

Consequently, the Criminal Petition is allowed.

The miscellaneous petitions pending, if any, shall stand closed.

_______________   

R. KANTHA RAO,J    

21st March, 2013

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