WHY WAS THE DOMESTIC VIOLENCE ACT INTRODUCED?

Introduction

 The biggest problem that women face today is violence against them. violence is broad of two kinds. 1 occurred in a public place and was punishable under section 354, 509, 376,  of the Indian penal code and another occurred with the family and was punishable under section 304B, 306, 498A, of the Indian penal code. in the male-dominated society, women have been victims of violence and exploitation. in India women have been socially economically physically psychologically, and sexually exploited. in India, domestic violence is widely prevalent but largely invisible.
             the concept of sex equality and women’s empowerment except.  granted under the constitution of India but equality of status guaranteed by the constitution is a myth to millions of women who are subject to various kinds of violence in their homes. in India, domestic violence is widely prevalent but largely invisible in the public domain. however, keeping in view the rights guaranteed under articles 14, 15, and 21 of the constitution the legislation “ the protection of women from domestic violence act 2005” was enacted to protect women from being victims of domestic violence and to prevent the occurrence of domestic violence in the society. the said act came into force on 26th October 2006. the app is enacted to eliminate all sorts of discrimination against women. it has been a unique combination of civil and criminal laws. That is progressive not only because recognized women who live in a relationship but also extend protection to other women in the household including sister and mother. it is the Bonafide legislation to enhance justice for women this act supplements the existing laws governing marriage divorce custody of children and property.

Domestic violence

The expression “domestic violence” means any act or omission or commission or conduct of the respondent shall amount to the domestic violence in certain circumstances. it includes causing physical abuse, sexual abuse, and verbal and emotional for economic use which is also explained under the definition of domestic violence.

Section 3 of the law says that any act/ omission/ conduct/ Commission that harms or injures or has the potential to harm or injure will be considered ‘domestic violence. Even a single act of commission or omission constitutes domestic violence. In other words, women do not have to suffer a prolonged period of abuse before taking recourse to the law.

            The law says any definition of domestic violence is a human right violation. further, the law details the different form of violence faced by women and ensure that such interactions are not left solely to the discretion of the judge.

            In Saraswathy vs. Babu A I R 2014 SC the facts are the appearance wife has been harassed since 2004.

The hon’ble apex court observed that-

 “even after the order passed by the subordinate judge the respondent-husband has not allowed the appellant-wife to reside in the shared household matrimonial house coma and held that there is a continuance of domestic violence committed by the respondent-husband against the appellant-wife. in view of such continued domestic violence, it is not necessary for the code below to decide whether the domestic violence is committed prior to the coming into the force of the protection of the women from domestic violence act 2005 and whether such act Falls within the definition of the term domestic violence as defined”.

Objective, need, and the reason For introducing the Domestic Violence Act, 2005:

The statement of object need and the reason attached to the app shows that intention of the act is to protect women from domestic violence faced by them in their household. Applicants under this act will be only women… an important feature of the said Landmark law is a woman’s right Secure housing or alternative accommodation. it provides for a woman’s right to reside in the matrimonial or shared household. this right is secured by a residence order which is passed by the court. this act does not distinguish between married women and women who are in live-in relationships. it provides equal protection to both from abuse at the hands of their partners.

The reason why the Domestic Violence Act was enacted, was to protect the women from abuse, after marriage,  Since then, it has been used for good, but it has also been abused by many.

If we take a look at history, then what we find is, that men, dominate women. This domination could be in any form, like, it could be Torture, domestic violence, or other abuses. 

But here we focus on domestic violence. Those who are the victims of Domestic Violence can seek relief under both civil as well as criminal laws. Domestic violence is considered a violation of human rights in the first place, be it any kind of domestic violence, including household, or marriage, living in relationships, etc.

United Nations and other nations felt a need to curb domestic violence against women in the whole world, after observing the various cases of domestic violence, over many years, which were increasing day by day at an alarming rate. And to do this, all the countries enacted different laws, to prevent such inhumane treatment of women, which included torturing them or treating them like animals. 

When we talk about India, then the law “Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, of 2005 got enacted and came into effect on 26th October 2006. Section 498-A under the Indian Penal Code provides that after marriage, if the husband of the wife, or her in-laws, and husband’s other relatives, then such a person who commits such offense is liable to a punishment of imprisonment, that could be extended up to 3 years, along with fine. It is made to protect the women against the cruelty that is done to them after marriage.  Section 3 of the Act has defined the term Domestic Violence.

Under this Act, domestic violence can include, physical threat, economic threat, sexual threat, verbal, or emotional threat, or even actual abuse. It means that it is not necessary for the violence to be physical in nature.

RELIEFS AVAILABLE UNDER ACT :

Section 17 – Right to reside in a shared household.

Section 18 – Protection Order

Section 19 – Residence orders

Section 20 – Monetary orders

Section 21 – Custody Orders

Section 22 – Compensation Order

It is held by the Hon’ble Bombay High Court in Vishal Damodhar Patil -Vs- Vishakha Vishal Patil, 2009 Cri. L. J., 107 that While considering the question of granting the ex-parte ad-interim or interim relief, the Magistrate will have to consider the nature of the reliefs sought in the main application under Section 12(1) of the said act in as much as an interim relief under Section 23 of the said Act can be granted in aid of the final relief sought in the main application. It is also held that there is no need for a separate application for interim reliefs.”

Latest Pronouncement on

LAW RELATING TO WOMEN:-

 THE PROTECTION OF WOMEN FROM DOMESTIC VIOLENCE ACT, 2005.

(1) Deepak Gupta V. Sonu Gupta & others,  Bombay High Court.

 “The maintenance order under Section 125 of Cr.P.C. or under Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act can be passed on the basis of palpable income of the husband.”

(2) Amitabh Upadhya v. State of Maharashtra, Bombay High Court.

“In the said case, respondent No.2 wife withdrew from the society of her husband in the year 2005 and since then there was no domestic relationship between them. The acts of domestic violence alleged by the wife were not covered when appellant and respondent No.2 were not in domestic relation but happened after two years and five years since they had been divorced by mutual consent. Hence it cannot be said that appellant committed any offense while he was in a domestic relationship.”

(3) Sudha Mishra v. Surya Mishra, Delhi High Court.

“Daughter-in-law cannot assert here right, if any, in the property of her parents-in-law wherein her husband has no right, title, or interest. She cannot continue live in such a house with her parents-in-law against their consent and wishes. In fact, an adult son or daughter has no legal right to occupy the self-acquired property of the parents against their wishes. A son or daughter is permitted to live in the house, then they occupy the position as gratuitous licensee and if such license is revoked, then they have to vacate such property.”

(4) Namita Mohanty and another -vs- Pankaja Kumar Mohanty and others.

“There is no need to wait for the domestic incident report of the protection officer for issuance of notice.” “To issue direction to undergo counseling is not compulsory when Magistrate comes to the conclusion that matter can be settled.”

(5) Rajendra D. Seth v. Rekha Zha, 2014.

 “The first marriage of the respondent/husband still subsisting. The applicant and respondent were living together which was admitted by the respondent. It can prima facie be said that there was domestic relation between them. The applicant is entitled to interim maintenance.” “It is also held that if the respondent is not the owner of the shared household, the owner can take action for evidence of applicant.”

(6) Payal Agrawal v. Kunal Agrawal, 2014.

 “The D.V. Act contains no obstinance clause but it has limited application. Despite being subsequent legislation it cannot have an overriding effect on Family Courts Act, 1984. The Act of 1984 was specially meant for the establishment of a Special Court so that matters referred in explanation to Sec.7 of the Act can be dealt with by the Special Courts established for the purpose whereas the object of enactment of the D.V. Act was to protect the women from being the victim of the domestic violence and to prevent the occurrence of domestic violence in the society. Therefore, the application filed by the respondent for custody of the child or in the alternative to granting visiting right in his favor is not maintainable u/s 21 of the D.V. Act.”

 (7) Santosh Bakshi v. State of Punjab and others, AIR 2014 SC 2966.

“If a complaint of domestic violence is made by woman against a member of the family, the police without proper verification and investigation cannot submit a report that no case is made out. The investigating agency is required to make proper inquiries not only from the members of the family but also from neighbors, friends, and others. After such an inquiry, the investigating agency may form a definite opinion and file a report. It is for the Court to decide finally whether to take cognizance of the offense under any provisions of the D.V. Act.”

CONCLUSION

The Act provides speedy remedies to women who are subjected to domestic violence within the four walls of their house. It seeks to protect women from physical, emotional, sexual, and economic abuse. However, the law at present is inadequate to tackle the problem of domestic violence effectively. Implementation/ enforcement of orders is a major hindrance though positive directions are given under the Act. The confusion regarding the scope of the Act and the nature of reliefs have been removed to a certain extent due to the interpretations and clarifications made by the Hon’ble Apex Court and Hon’ble High Courts. This Act is designed to serve the purposes viz. Protection of women from domestic Violence both explicit and dormant is widespread evil in several families. This Act is passed in the Parliament in response to a World wide demand for such legislation to prevent such occurrences in the future and to assure families’ peaceful co-existence amongst their members. It is enacted to effectively protect the rights of women to live a decent and dignified life in the family. After realizing that such effective protection can be provided only by establishing adequate machinery to attend the difficulty of aggrieved women and keeping this in mind the provisions are made in the Act regarding Service Providers, Protection Officers, etc. and imposed several duties on them with the Magistrate.


REFERENCE

  • Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005 Bare Act.

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