Case Laws relating to section 498-A IPC by Various High Courts

Anticipatory Bail in 498-A IPC Honorable Supreme Court has held that Anticipatory Bail in 498-A IPC can be granted by Session Court or High Court, if the case prima facie not made out and the relatives have been implicated falsely. In 2021 various High Court rendered own opinion for 498-A IPC which are appended below : –  


MADRAS HIGH COURT

Decided: 2021

Short Note : Indian Penal Code, 1860 Sections 107 , 306 , 307 and 498A Cruelty against women – Evidence of prosecution witnesses and report of the Revenue Divisional Officer, that there was no specific demand for dowry made by appellant – No demand for dowry and only they have referred to some harassment and cruelty met to his daughter – Even on day of occurrence, mother of deceased was in the house of the appellant – She had not stated anything about the demand for dowry or instigation or abatement – Ingredients of Section 107 of Indian Penal Code not made out – In present case deceased said to have committed suicide – However, prosecution not proved the instigation or abatement on the part of appellant – As far as the commission of offence under Section 498(A) of Indian Penal Code was concerned – Even in the compliant and evidence of prosecution witnesses as well as the report of the Revenue Divisional Officer it was seen that there was some harassment and cruelty made by the appellant and victim was harassed – Even soon before the date of occurrence there was a quarrel between the appellant and deceased – Offence of Section 306 of Indian Penal Code, against the appellant was not proved by the prosecution beyond all reasonable doubt – Offence of Section 498-A of Indian Penal Code, was proved – Merely because and accused has been held liable to be punished under Section 498-A, Indian Penal Code – It does not follow that on the same evidence he must also and necessarily be held guilty of having abetted the commission of suicide by the woman – Settled that acquittal of a charge under Section 306, though not by itself a ground for acquittal under Section 498-A as well, without which the charge cannot be said to be maintained – Conviction and sentence passed for the offence under Section 498-A of Indian Penal Code, confirmed.


JHARKHAND HIGH COURT

Decided: 2021

Short Note : Indian Penal Code, 1860 Section 498A Revision petition against conviction and sentence under Section 498(A) of the Indian Penal Code passed by Trial Court and confirmed by Appellate Court – Husband-accused convicted and sentenced whereas mother-in-law and two sisters-in-law of the deceased had been acquitted for the alleged offence – Legality of – Perusal of evidence on record – Trial Court convicted petitioner inter alia, under Section 498(A) of Indian Penal Code by holding that cruelty meted out to the informant by the accused including petitioner husband was on account of unlawful demand for dowry/property and failure by the informant/her family members to meet such demand – Appellate Court upheld conviction of the petitioner by holding that cruelty meted out to the informant by the petitioner husband was sufficient for a deserted wife to commit any act dangerous to her life – Specific evidence of informant that she was kept without food for days together during her stay at her matrimonial house – She was also assaulted all over her body using belt – Nature of cruelty upon the informant was sufficient to cause grave danger to her life and was certainly sufficient for a deserted wife to commit any act dangerous to her life – Appellate Court had not committed any illegality or material irregularity or impropriety in holding that cruelty meted out to the informant was sufficient for a deserted wife to commit any act dangerous to her life – Trial Court found the evidence of the witnesses including the victim as wholly reliable – Appellate Court found some additions in the evidence of the witnesses and such additional allegations were segregated as unreliable and benefit was given to the accused – Court not inclined to interfere with the impugned judgement of conviction under Section 498(A) of Indian Penal Code.


JHARKHAND HIGH COURT

Decided: 2021

Short Note : Indian Penal Code, 1860 Section 498A Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961 Sections 3 and 4 Offence under conviction and sentence awarded – Appeal against conviction under Section 498-A, Indian Penal Code confirmed – Conviction under Sections 3 and 4 of Dowry Prohibition Act, Set aside – Legality of – Informant, who was the victim of the case and material witnesses had fully supported the prosecution case and was thoroughly cross-examined – Merely because there was no independent witness, same by itself does not make the impugned judgments illegal, irregular or perverse particularly when the prosecution witnesses have fully supported the prosecution case – Merely because there was no external injury found on the body of the informant when she was examined by the Doctor did not create any doubt in the prosecution case as the Doctor had proved the injury report and stated that at the time of examination, the informant complained of pain which she sustained during the course of assault made by the accused persons – Court found that informant was examined by the Doctor after she had returned from her matrimonial house to her parents’ house – Concurrent findings, found that demand of dowry of Rs.50,000/- was made by the petitioner and there was torture of the informant on account of non-fulfilment of the demand from her parents’ side – Merely because the petitioner had been acquitted for the offence under Section 3 /4 of the Dowry Prohibition Act on technical ground of absence of sanction for prosecution – Same did not create any impact or doubt on the aforesaid concurrent findings leading to conviction under Section 498 A of Indian Penal Code – No illegality or perversity in the impugned judgements calling for any interference in revisional jurisdiction, so far as the conviction of the petitioner under Section 498 A Indian Penal Code was concerned – No illegality or perversity committed by Courts below in convicting the accused under Section 498-A, Indian Penal Code – Sentence – 16 years elapsed – Modification of the sentence would meet the ends of justice – Sentence reduced to three months and fine amount enhanced to Rs. 50,000 – Revision disposed of accordingly.


BOMBAY HIGH COURT

Decided: 2021

Short Note : Indian Penal Code, 1860 Sections 498 (A) and 306 Evidence Act, 1872 Section 113A Acquittal order – Appeal against same – In instant case, victim’s mother had given her father-in-law’s saloon shop on rent to victim’s father in law i.e. accused no.1 – Victim committed suicide by setting herself a fire – Appreciation of evidence – Trial Court on the examination of the evidence of complainant (PW-1) has held that evidence of PW-1 is totally silent on the specific date/month of the beating and harassment by the accused – Trial Court also discredited the evidence of PW-2 due to the discrepancies in his statement before the police and his evidence – Trial Court on an examination of law relating to offences under Section 498(A) also held that there must be a nexus between the cruelty, i.e., the harassment caused and the fact of committing suicide – No specific date or time has been mentioned – The allegations of harassment were held to be vague and only on hearsay and in the absence of specific evidence, the offence under Section 498(A) was held not to be proved – Offence under Section 306, the Trial Court held that there was no evidence to show that the accused had instigated or abetted victim to commit suicide – From the evidence available on record, there is nothing to substantiate the charge levelled against accused – There is an acquittal and therefore, there is double presumption in favour of the accused – For acquitting the accused, the Trial Court observed that the prosecution had failed to prove its case – Order of acquittal, in my view, cannot be interfered with – No fault with the judgment of the Trial Court – Appeal dismissed.


MADRAS HIGH COURT

Decided: 2021

Short Note : Indian Penal Code, 1860 Sections 498A and 304B Dowry harassment – Whether finding of trial Judge that appellant was guilty under Section 498-A for subjecting deceased to cruelty and sentence imposed thereon were correct? – Appellant frequently demanded money unlawfully from victim’s father/P.W.1 through victim to start poultry business and caused harassment – Trial Judge rightly found appellant guilty under Section 498-A – Conviction recorded under Section 498-A confirmed – Sentence modified from three years rigorous imprisonment to six months rigorous imprisonment with fine, in default to pay fine, to undergo three months simple imprisonment – Ordered accordingly.


GAUHATI HIGH COURT

Decided: 2021

Short Note : Indian Penal Code, 1860, Section?498(A) – Criminal Procedure Code, 1973, Section?161 – Framing of charge? and criminal proceeding – ?Inherent power under Section?482?of Criminal Procedure Code, 1973 has to be carefully exercised so that no injustice is done to parties – It should be of grave and not of a trivial character and it should be palpable and clear and not doubtful and there should exist no other provision of law by which party aggrieved could have sought relief – Under Section?482?of Criminal Procedure Code, 1973 High Court does not function as Court of Appeal or Revision – Thus, Court required to form opinion as to whether any prima facie material is there to frame charge, under law and scope of framing charge under Section 498(A)(a) of Indian Penal Code – High Court should not sit as Appellate Court to appreciate evidence at this stage, as Trial Court is in seisin of matter and Court can proceed, on basis of statement of victim herself – Therefore, Trial Court still in a position to alter charge under Section?216?of the Criminal Procedure Code, 1973 if so mandates after recording statement of victim and to proceed accordingly.


PUNJAB AND HARYANA HIGH COURT

Decided: 2021

Short Note : Criminal Procedure Code, 1973, Section 482 – Indian Penal Code, 1860, Sections 406 and 498A – Quashing of FIR – object behind insertion of Section 498-A was to protect married women from being subjected to mental and physical cruelty, by her husband and his relatives, however, unfortunately, in some cases provisions of Section 498-A IPC are being grossly misused – Investigating agency to desist from registering criminal cases in a mechanical manner – Timing of registration of FIR in question i.e. after decree of divorce granted to petitioner and respondent coupled with fact that respondent who is a Canadian Citizen not even visited India subsequent to her divorce and pursuing present case through her special power of attorney speaks volumes of malafides behind institution of criminal proceedings against petitioners – Therefore, FIR liable to be quashed.


ANDHRA PRADESH HIGH COURT

Decided: 2021

Short Note : Indian Penal Code, 1860, Sections 498A and 114 – Criminal Procedure Code, 1973, Section 482 – Quashing of FIR – Held, only a relative of husband by blood or marriage is liable for prosecution under Section 498-A IPC – Girlfriend or concubine, being not connected by blood or marriage, is not a relative of husband for purpose of Section 498-A IPC – Stay of further proceedings pursuant to registration of F.I.R.


PATNA HIGH COURT

Decided: 2021

Short Note : Indian Penal Code, 1860 Sections 376 , 366 (A) and 372 Kidnapping, rape and sale of minor girl for prostitution – Conviction and sentence – Prosecutrix had consistently supported what had happened with her – No cross-examination to doubt the trustworthiness of the prosecutrix or to have any inclining of motive for false implication of the appellant – Medical opinion was that hymen of the prosecutrix was ruptured – Non-finding of spermatozoa was natural as the victim was examined much after the commission of the crime alleged – Prosecutrix was specific that she got married with the appellant under pressure of the people and that marriage was itself a fraud – Land transferred in favour of the victim was a sham transaction – Prosecution successfully proved that on the date of occurrence, prosecutrix was a minor – Hence, her consent was immaterial – She claimed that she was ravished against her will, the offence under Section 375 of the Indian Penal Code stands proved against appellant – Appellant intentionally had handed over the victim to one ‘G’ who put her in a place of prostitution – Offence under Section 372 of Penal Code proved against appellant – Prosecution successfully proved the charge under Section 366(A) of the Code – Subsequent act of fictitious marriage or institution of a case under Section 498(A) of the Indian Penal Code would not minimize the effect of the present criminal act committed earlier – No any infirmity with the judgment of the Trial Court.


JHARKHAND HIGH COURT

Decided: 2021

Short Note : Indian Penal Code, 1860 Section 498A Offence under – Appeal against – Conviction – Dismissed – Legality of – Perusal of evidence on record – Trial Court convicted the petitioner under Section 498A of Indian Penal Code read with explanation (a) thereto and not explanation (b) to the said section as the demand of any property/dowry could not be proved against the petitioner – Conduct of the accused for an offence under Section 498 A read with explanation (a) includes both, the act and omission, which has an underlying element of an emotional distress and mental agony – Sufferings of the complainant at the parental home was a result of a deliberate omission by the petitioner by not performing Gauna – Adverse effects on mental health in the parental home out of such deliberate omission would, amount to commission of cruelty within the meaning of Section 498A of Indian Penal Code – Petitioner, took the complainant along with him by the orders of the Court with an assurance that he would keep her properly, but left her at an isolated place – Such act of the petitioner certainly endangered her health, safety, life, limb and well-being, both mental and physical, and actually caused humiliation, trauma amounting to emotional abuse and mental distress – Appellate Court already recorded a finding of acute cruelty to the complainant at the hands of the petitioner by appreciating the materials on record – Courts below have not committed any illegality or material irregularity or impropriety in passing the impugned judgment of conviction – No interference called for on the point of conviction – Complaint case was filed as back as in the year 2007, and about 14 years have elapsed – Petitioner faced the rigors of the criminal case for a long time – Present offence appears to be the first offence of the petitioner – Facts and circumstances of the case did not call for maximum sentence to the petitioner – Sentence modified and reduced to rigorous imprisonment for a total period of one year and fine amount was enhanced to Rs.1,00,000/- to be deposited before court below.


JHARKHAND HIGH COURT

Decided: 2021

Short Note : Indian Penal Code, 1860 Sections 302 , 34 , 498A and 149 Indian Evidence Act, 1872 Section 106 Double murder – Conviction and sentence – Legality of – Perusal of evidence on record – Accused had not raised up a plea of alibi, and the evidence of PW1 and PW6 that he was present in the village and seen with ‘A.R’ remained un-impeached by defence – Accused had to explain how his wife had suffered homicidal death in her matrimonial home and how dead body of ‘A.R’ was found in the room occupied by him – It would be within the exclusive knowledge of a husband who lives with his wife under the same roof in what manner his wife was killed – Failure on his part to offer a plausible and acceptable explanation would be a highly incriminating Circumstance raising grave suspicion on his complicity in the murder of his wife – Prosecution proved the charge under Section 498-A of the Indian Penal Code against the accused – Circumstances which were enumerated by Trial Judge proved by the prosecution by leading cogent and consistent evidence – Chain of circumstances so proved by the prosecution against accused complete – No doubt that the accused committed murder of two deceased persons – Conviction and sentence awarded by Court below warrants no interference.


ALLAHABAD HIGH COURT

Decided: 2021

Short Note : Criminal Procedure Code, 1973, Sections 41 (I)(b) and 41A – Indian Penal Code, 1860 Section 498A Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961 Sections 3 and 4 Demand of dowry for solemnizing marriage – Quashing of FIR and arrest – Held, regularly petitions are filed where offence committed would be for a lesser period then seven years or maximum punishment would be seven years and they routinely bring by way of writ petition scrap of being arrested – Provision of Section 41-A were incorporated who is not charged with heinous crime does not require and whose custody is not required may not face arrest – Directions issued:-

(i) State Governments to instruct its police officers not to automatically arrest when a case under Section 498-A IPC is registered but to satisfy themselves about the necessity for arrest under the parameters laid down above following from Section 41-A of Cr.P.C. 1973.

(ii) All police officers be provided with a check list containing specified sub-clauses under Section 41(1)(b)(ii);

(iii) Police officer shall forward the check list duly filled and furnish the reasons and materials which necessitated the arrest, while forwarding/producing the accused before the Magistrate for further detention;

(iv) Magistrate while authorising detention of accused shall peruse report furnished by police officer in terms aforesaid and only after recording its satisfaction, Magistrate will authorise detention.

(v) Notice of appearance in terms of Section 41-A CrPC be served on the accused within two weeks from the date of institution of the case, which may be extended by the Superintendent of Police of the district for the reasons to be recorded in writing.


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One Thought to “Case Laws relating to section 498-A IPC by Various High Courts”

  1. Rahul Agarwal

    My relatives are facing criminal proceedings under section 498A of IPC and 406 IPC at District Court Sikar. The case is baseless and false. Police has filed charge sheet. Can they file any type of petition for quashing criminal proceeding or staying criminal proceedings as both are Govt. servants . Kindly suggest further action for dealing our case.

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