RTI MATTER – URGENT
CPIO and Additional Legal Adviser
Ministry of Law & Justice, Deptt. of Legal Affairs
Room No. 417-A,
A-Wing, Shastri Bhawan,
New Delhi – 110001
Sub: A petition under Right to information act–2005 for information regarding “Abuse & Misuse of Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005”. Enclosed a postal order no: of Rs. 10-00 in favour of the accounts officer, Legal affairs, Ministry of Law & Justice, New Delhi.
Through this petition I would like to bring the rampant misuse of the above said law by wife’s in urban India. The said act is totally one sided and is highly misused by ladies in urban India. I would like to bring to your kind attention and notice the issues faced by the Indian Husbands, in view of the women favored laws so that you can conduct independent research and study of the issue and make suitable suggestions to the Government.
The main issues of the “Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005” are listed below.
1. Heavily biased in favor of women: This law is made in such a way that husband has no scope to give a complaint to the magistrate regarding the domestic violence on him by his wife. The law is made by assuming that only women can be victims of the domestic violence.
2. Made only for daughter-in-law: Another major issue is the legal terms are used in such a way that only daughter-in-laws are using this Act. We have reached 21st century and in this era the daughter-in-law are educated, sophisticated, have financial and social freedom. Whereas the mother-in-laws are from older generation and mostly uneducated. A mother-in-law who is 60+ years old suffering from various illnesses cannot harass a 21st century daughter-in-law. But this law is made by assuming that only daughter-in-laws are suffering.
3. Complain is same as 498a and CrPC 125: The most unfortunate thing is the petition filed in front of a magistrate is normally same as the 498a and CrPC complaint. The overburdened judiciary is virtually dealing with 3 or more cases in different court the same charges and same relief.
4. Breaking the families: This law is virtually breaking the Indian families. In the name of “Women Empowerment” the Government of India has introduced a biased law which has accelerated the pace of breaking of Indian families. Daughter-in-laws are misusing this law to blackmailing their husbands to throw his old parent out of the house.
5. Cruelty on Husbands: Husbands are left with no choice but to face the same charges in different court and keep defending them in front of different forum to prove their innocence.
6. Right to residence: The act has provision of “Right to residence” for a daughter-in-law and also a “protection order”. In this case the husband has to leave the house. In Indian tradition normally in the old age parent stays with their son. In recent trends, it is observed that after getting the “Right to residence” the daughter-in-laws are throwing the husband and his parent out of the house. The old aged parents are left on the streets just on the basis of a false complaint.
7. Maintenance to daughter-in-law: This is another unreasonable relief granted to a daughter-in-law in this Act. Whereas there are already provisions in the law like CrPC 125 for maintenance, there was no need of this relief in this law. If a woman is in real need of maintenance then there is a provision of interim maintenance in the CrPC 125.
8. Sole testimony of women is enough: Section 32 (2) says that “under the sole testimony of the aggrieved person, the court may conclude that an offence has been committed by the accused.
By treating the victim’s testimony, as gospel truth without any need for corroboration it has virtually empowered all women to punish men at their will. This is very dangerous for innocent men and society in large. As it is the rape, adultery and dowry laws are already skewed in favor of women. And now this Act would leave the men with absolutely no remedy against the erring women who would lodge false complaint. All she has to do is go to the court/police, register the false case and the husband will be right behind bars in a moment.
9. Wordings are unfortunate: (Ch.II, S.3) of the Domestic violence Act includes actual abuse or threat of abuse — physical, verbal, emotional or economic. While physical and economical abuse can be proved it is almost impossible to prove verbal & emotional abuse. In this scenario, the inclusion of verbal and emotional abuse could result in women registering false cases as they won’t have to prove anything
10. Tool to harass men: There are many such loopholes in the Domestic Violence Act. The Domestic Violence Act, under the garb of protecting harassed women, has now actually become a powerful tool in the hands of women to harass men and strip them off all their rights. The Act will actually worsen the domestic problems leading to breakdown in marriages as women will be now tempted / encouraged to go to courts/police after trivial fights happening in the heat of the moment. The Act not only gives sweeping powers to females but also takes away all the rights of men. While it imposes a lot of responsibility on men, it gives lots of rights to women without fixing any responsibility on them.
11. Tool for revenge: While domestic laws are enacted to save the poor female, there have been many cases where many cunning, unscrupulous women have misused these laws to their advantage. For example the misuse of Section 498a meant to protect women from cruelty and dowry harassment. There have been cases where women were incited by the family members to take revenge to settle family disputes by registering false cases. Such gangs of extortionists to extract money from innocent men and to wreck vengeance will now grossly misuse the Domestic Violence Act that is made to protect women. By making a one sided Act, wives / live-in partners will now be tempted to use it against their husbands / partners.
12. Punishment for misuse: Gender partisanship is wholly out of place in cases of domestic violence. Tweaking the way the law is interpreted in such a way as to diminish responsibility for one sex or the other could have mortal consequences for poor men. For the courts and women organizations, it is a matter of obvious mistruth that women cannot commit domestic crimes or that women cannot register false cases. Why shouldn’t men also have protection against domestic violence? Why can’t the same factors, attributed to men for harassing their wives can also be attributed to women? Suicide rate of men in India goes up by almost 50% after marriage due to emotional abuse. Why isn’t there any provision in the Act that will punish a woman who misuses the law?
Sir, In view of the above I want certain information from you.
1. Is your department aware of the above issue?
2. Has the Legal affairs Department done any study or research on this issue?
3. Is there any proposal in Legal affairs Department to study this issue and make suitable recommendation to the Government of India?
Thanking you sir,
Sr. Specialist, Emp no 1568
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