Criminal Trident Pack: IPC, CrPC and IEA by Sr. Adv. G.S Shukla and Adv. Raghav Arora
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  • In the case of Shaikh Taslim Sahikh Hakim vs State of Maharashtra and anr. the Hon’ble Bombay HC has held that a Family Court can dissolve a Muslim marriage by way of mutual consent following an amicable settlement between the parties. 
  • In the instant case, the husband sought quashing of the FIR registered with the Parbhani Police for the offences punishable under sections 498A, 323, 504 and 506 of the IPC. in addition to this, he also sought for the quashing of the consequential chargesheet on the grounds that the parties have reached an amicable settlement. 
  • The Counsel for the applicant (husband) submitted that the couple had separated by mutual consent and had approached the Family Court for the declaration of their marital status in accordance with section 2 of the Muslim Personal Law (Shariat) Application Act, 1937 read with section 7(1)(b) of the Family Courts Act, 1984. 
  • In March of 2022, the Family Court declared that the two parties were no longer husband and wife in accordance with the mutual agreement between them. The wife had given her consent for quashing the criminal proceedings and had accepted Rs.5 lakh as a full and final satisfaction of her claim. 
  • In the instant case, the Court observed that section 2 of the Shariat Act, 1937 states that all the questions about property, marriage, dissolution of marriage including taaq, ila, zihar, khula, mubarat. Maintenance, dower, guardianship, gifts, etc. where the parties are muslims shall be considered according to Shariat. 
  • The Court also observed that section 7(1) of the Family Courts Act states that a suit for declaration of the status of a marriage or its validity can also be a subject matter before a Family Court.
  • The Court referred to the decision of the Apex Court in Mst. Zohara Khatoon vs. Mohd. Ibrahim (1981) SCC wherein it was held that mubarat is a form of extra-judicial divorce based on mutual consent. The same is valid and is untouched by the Dissolution of Muslim Marriage Act.
  • The Court also observed that the relevant part of the decision of the Punjab and Haryana HC in Kulwinder Singh vs State of Punjab (2007) CTC had been reproduced by the Apex Court in Gian Singh vs State of Punjab and ors (2012) SCC it was observed that the HC can quash an FIR in exercise of its inherent powers only to secure the ends of justice or to prevent the abuse of the process of the Court. In cases arising out of matrimony relating to dowry or family disputes where the wrong is private or personal in nature, and the parties have resolved their disputes, the High Court may quash the criminal proceedings if in its opinion, due to the compromise between the parties, the chances of conviction are very bleak and great prejudice would be caused to the accused by not quashing the criminal proceedings despite a full and complete settlement between the accused and the victim.  
  • Thus, the HC observed that the Family Court had rightly applied the provisions of the Shariat Act to the parties, and that it had acted within its jurisdiction. The marriage stood dissolved by mutual consent. 
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