Supreme Court orders woman police officer’s father to shell out Rs 5 lakh for filing false dowry demand cases to harass her husband : The Tribune India

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Supreme Court orders woman police officer’s father to shell out Rs 5 lakh for filing false dowry demand cases to harass her husband

A Bench led by Justice Vikram Nath deprecates the conduct of the Rajasthan police officer and her father for misusing state machinery to file false dowry demand cases against her husband

Supreme Court orders woman police officer’s father to shell out Rs 5 lakh for filing false dowry demand cases to harass her husband

While the Hisar court acquitted the accused husband on August 2, 2017, the Rajasthan High Court refused to quash the FIR registered at Udaipur, forcing him to move the top court.



Tribune News Service

Satya Prakash

New Delhi, April 21

The Supreme Court has ordered the father of a woman police officer in Rajasthan to shell out Rs 5 lakh for lodging false dowry demand cases under Section 498A of the IPC at different places against her husband to harass him.

“We thus deprecate this practice of state machinery being misused for ulterior motives and for causing harassment to the other side, we are thus inclined to impose cost on the respondent No. 2 (woman’s father) in order to compensate the appellant,” a Bench of Justice Vikram Nath and Justice Prashant Kumar Mishra said in its April 19 verdict.

“Without going into these statutory provisions and the case laws relied upon by the parties, we are convinced that the impugned proceedings are nothing but an abuse of the process of law,” the Bench said, allowing the husband’s appeal against the Rajasthan High Court’s March 6, 2017 order dismissing his petition seeking quashing of an FIR lodged at Women Police Station, Udaipur under Sections 498A, 406, 384, 420 and 120(B) of Indian Penal Code.

Imposing costs of Rs 5 lakh on the woman police officer’s father, the top court directed him to deposit the amount with the Supreme Court’s Registrar in four weeks. It ordered that 50% of the amount may be transmitted in the account of the Supreme Court Legal Services Committee and the remaining 50% to the appellant husband.

The appellant/husband – a Hisar-based chartered accountant -- and the respondent No. 3 wife (Deputy Superintendent of Police, Udaipur, at the time of marriage) came in contact in June 2014 through the internet. They got engaged on February 18, 2015 and the marriage was solemnised at Udaipur on March 21, 2015.

The woman’s father filed a complaint at the Hisar police station for alleged dowry demand under Section 498A of the IPC against the appellant and his family members on October 10, 2015. After five days, another complaint was registered at Udaipur by the woman's father against the appellant husband on the same set of allegations under Section 498A of the IPC and certain other provisions of law alleging that the appellant subjected his wife to cruelty.

While the Hisar court acquitted the accused husband on August 2, 2017, the Rajasthan High Court refused to quash the FIR registered at Udaipur, forcing him to move the top court.

“In the facts and circumstances as recorded above, we are of the view that respondent Nos. 2 (woman’s father) and 3 (woman police officer) had been misusing their official position by lodging complaints one after the other. Further, their conduct of neither appearing before the trial court at Hisar nor withdrawing their complaint at Hisar would show that their only intention was to harass the appellant by first making him face a trial at Hisar and then again at Udaipur,” the Bench noted.

“The respondent No. 3 (wife) was a gazetted police officer at the relevant time and was also well aware of the laws, in particular the CrPC and the provisions thereto. Neither the complainant (her father) nor the victim (wife) entered the witness box before the Hisar court allowing total wastage of the valuable time of the court and the investigating agency. Merely because she was a police officer, she first managed to get an FIR lodged at Hisar through her father, and thereafter she moved to her hometown at Udaipur and got another complaint lodged by her father within a week,” the top court said, deprecating the conduct of the police officer and her father.

“It is not denied by the respondent Nos. 2 and 3 that they did not lodge a complaint at Hisar. They also did not file an application withdrawing their complaint on the grounds that it was wrongly filed here or that the said complaint may be transferred to Udaipur for investigation as the offence was committed at Udaipur. They allowed the investigating agency to continue to investigate in which their statements were also recorded,” it noted.

 

 

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