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CRIME UNDER CLOSED DOORS

“The enemy doesn’t stand a chance when the victim decides to survive”

Many cases get registered under domestic violence by both men and women every year. Domestic violence became one of a significant term in October 2018`s # me too movement in INDIA. Women came out and spoke about the violence by their spouse and their family members but the impact didn’t last long. When we take a glance into the outer-world we get to see many crimes and violence towards both men and women, but men have the highest number of cases recorded against them in domestic violence.

According to The Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005. Any physical, sexual, verbal, economical abuse which includes any harm, insults, by calling names, unlawful dowry demands shall constitute to domestic violence.

And under sec 498-A of Indian Penal Code, 1860. whoever being the husband or the relative of the husband of a woman, subjects such woman to cruelty shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years and shall also be liable to fine. This section is non-bailable and a cognizable offence. Domestic violence is undoubtedly a human rights issue and a serious deterrent to development. Rights guaranteed under Articles 14, 15 and 21 by the constitution of India provide a remedy under the civil law which is intended to protect the women from being victims of domestic violence and to prevent the occurrence of domestic violence in the society.

Section-3 of The Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005 defines domestic violence as any act or omission or commission or conduct of domestic violence in case of any harm or injury to the aggrieved person including economic abuse. Husband can also file a case against the wife under Protection of women from Domestic Violence Act. In Jammu and Kashmir, Jammu took cognizance of a complaint filed by a husband against wife under the protection of women from domestic violence act, 2005. Some general opinions say that domestic violence against men was not being taken as seriously as that compared to women. And in many cases even men hesitate to talk about violence against them because they are conscious of their reputation and people's reactions and judgements about them. As we are moving forward towards a gender equality society where both men and women are treated equally, laws are even set forward to provide an unbiased judgement. when an act is done which is established as a crime under Indian law, the penalty is also given unbiased according to the severity of the crime established.


According to a survey, women between the ages of 18-49 years have experienced verbal, physical, economical, and sexual abuse. According to the findings of National Family Health Survey (NFHS) Karnataka ranks no.1 in domestic violence cases. And added that 11% of young women from Karnataka, claimed that they had experienced sexual violence at the age of 18. And according to the latest report of National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) West Bengal reported the highest number of cases of cruelty against women by their spouses and relatives. While states like Nagaland, Goa, Himachal Pradesh and Union Territories in India like Lakshadweep, Jammu and Kashmir have the lowest percentage of domestic abuse cases respectively. The current statistics says 1 in 3 women and 1 in 4 men have experienced some form of physical and verbal violence by their intimate partner like slapping, verbal abuse, mental torture. Domestic violence is prevalent all over the world but even today it is largely invisible to the public. but the percentage of domestic violence cases has been reduced but has not been totally eradicated.

The intention of this act is to protect the injured party or suffered victim and prevent any such further crimes and to provide legal remedies to the persons approaching the court. There is no time limit to file a domestic violence case, but there is a time limit of sixty days to dispose the case under section 12(5), every application made under section 12(1) of Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act; says an aggrieved person or a protection officer or any other person on behalf of the aggrieved person may present an application to the magistrate seeking one or more reliefs under this act within a period of sixty days from the date of its first hearing. Even though section 12(5) clearly says the time for disposing a domestic violence case there are lakhs of cases pending regarding this domestic violence act since many years from the date of its first hearing in India. This act not only allows a married couple to file a case, but it gives the opportunity to every woman to file a case against any person of the shared household. Voluntary violence against any person is intolerable in a society where rules and regulations are governed by supreme laws.

This act also provides the following orders, if any act of domestic violence is committed against anyone by a person with whom they are/were residing in the same shared house under Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005 the magistrate can issue the following orders they are section 18- protection orders (deals with the prohibition of the adult male person from aiding or abetting or committing any act of domestic violence, entering the place of employment of the aggrieved person, attempting to communicate in any form, alienating any assets, causing violence or committing any act as specified in the protection order), section 19- residence orders (the magistrate can pass any order which he may deem reasonably necessary to protect or to provide for the safety of the aggrieved person or any child of such aggrieved person), section 20- monetary reliefs, section 21- custody orders (the order of custody that is passed is temporary in nature, and can be passed only during the pendency of an application for protection order), section 22- compensation orders (magistrate may on application made by aggrieved person pass an order directing respondent to pay compensation), section 23- power to grant interim and Ex-party orders (magistrate may pass such interim order as he deems just and proper), section 25- duration and alteration of orders (A protection order given under this act shall be in force till the aggrieved person applies for discharge or the magistrate may, on application made by the aggrieved person or the respondent pass an order altering, modifying or revoking any order made under the act), section 31- penalty for breach of protection order by respondent.

Under The Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005 there is no penal action taken against the persons committing domestic violence there is only issuing orders against them. According to my view, this act should get amended and penal actions should be included.


Source:

Book name-The Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005 Book author-A. VIJAY SARADHI,

Book Citation: -Act No. 43 of 2005, W.E.F. 26-10-2006.



This article is written Harshitha Avula of Sri padmavati mahila visvavidyalayam (women's University).

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