Dowry FIR post divorce plea not vendetta: MP HC | India News

BHOPAL/JABALPUR: If a woman remained quiet about dowry harassment to save her marriage and lodged a complaint after her husband filed for divorce, it cannot be construed as an act of vendetta, Madhya Pradesh high court has said while refusing to quash an FIR filed against the husband and in-laws. The husband had filed a petition seeking quashing of the FIR, arguing that his wife lodged a complaint of dowry harassment in retaliation to his divorce petition.
Quoting Supreme Court orders on what forms a “counter blast” to an action, like filing of divorce by a husband, Justice G S Ahluwalia said: “If the wife had maintained silence in order to save her marital life and did not lodge the report, then her silence for the noble cause should not be considered against her by holding that the FIR was lodged by way of counter blast to the divorce petition.”
Once the wife realised that all chances of reconciliation had vanished because a divorce petition had been filed, and if she then decided to take action in accordance with law, she cannot be blamed for it, the judge observed.”On the contrary, it can be said that earlier she tried to save her marital life, and only after realising that everything is over, if she decided to make a complaint about the cruelty meted out to her, then she cannot be non-suited for her good gestures of maintaining silence,” Justice Ahluwalia said in a recent order.
Referring to the contention of her husband and in-laws that she had taken away all her goods while leaving the house in the presence of Shahdol municipal council vice-president, the court said if she had taken away her “streedhan” with her, nobody can complain about it “as the wife alone is the owner of her streedhan”.
Compelling a married woman to live with her parents on account of non-fulfilment of dowry demands would also amount to mental cruelty, the judge said and dismissed the plea to quash the FIR.

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