7 Recent cases where Courts Quashed 498a in 2020

498a Quash Judgments-  - In Year 2020 - 7 cases where Courts Quashed 498a
498a Quash Judgments-  - In Year 2020 - 7 cases where Courts Quashed 498a

498A Quash Judgments– In year 2020 - 7 498A IPC cases where courts Quashed 498a


13.03.2020 – Punjab & Haryana High Court held that NO Specific Allegations against father-in-law, mother-in-law, brother- in-law and sister-in-law staying separately leads to quash of 498a case.




“20. It would be relevant at this stage to take note of an apt observation of this Court recorded in the matter of G.V. Rao vs. L.H.V. Prasad & Ors. reported in 2000(2) R.C.R. (Criminal) 290: (2000) 3 SCC 693 wherein also in a matrimonial dispute, this Court had held that the High Court should have quashed the complaint arising out of a matrimonial dispute wherein all family members had been roped into the matrimonial litigation which was quashed and set aside. Their Lordships observed therein with which we entirely agree that:
"there has been an outburst of matrimonial dispute in recent times. Marriage is a sacred ceremony, main purpose of which is to enable the young couple to settle down in life and live peacefully. But little matrimonial skirmishes suddenly erupt which often assume serious proportions resulting in heinous crimes in which elders of the family are also involved with the result that those who could have counselled and brought about rapprochement are rendered helpless on their being arrayed as accused in the criminal case. There are many reasons which need not be mentioned here for not encouraging matrimonial litigation so that the parties may ponder over their defaults and terminate the disputes amicably by mutual agreement instead of fighting it out in a court of law where it takes years and years to conclude and in that process the parties lose their "young" days in chasing their cases in different courts."
The view taken by the judges in this matter was that the courts would not encourage such disputes.
21. In yet another case reported in AIR 2003 SC 1386 in the matter of B.S. Joshi & Ors. vs. State of Haryana & Anr. it was observed that there is no doubt that the object of introducing Chapter XXA containing Section 498A in the Indian Penal Code was to prevent the torture to a woman by her husband or by relatives of her husband. Section 498A was added with a view to punish the husband and his relatives who harass or torture the wife to coerce her relatives to satisfy unlawful demands of dowry. But if the proceedings are initiated by the wife under Section 498A against the husband and his relatives and subsequently she has settled her disputes with her husband and his relatives and the wife and husband agreed for mutual divorce, refusal to exercise inherent powers by the High Court would not be proper as it would prevent woman from settling earlier. Thus for the purpose of securing the ends of justice quashing of FIR becomes necessary, Section 320 Cr.P.C. would not be a bar to the exercise of power of quashing. It would however be a different matter depending upon the facts and circumstances of each case whether to exercise or not to exercise such a power."
Similar are the observations made in Anita and others's case (supra).
Therefore, having perused the contents of the FIR and the aforesaid judgments, this Court is of the view that the present FIR qua the petitioners is liable to be quashed as the petitioners were named in the FIR being closely related with the husband, who had a matrimonial dispute with his wife. Moreover, the marriage between the parties was solemnized on 02.12.2008, and demand of dowry by such relatives after about 10 years of marriage is quite unrealistic.
Accordingly, the present petition is allowed and the FIR dated 15.05.2018 registered under Sections 323, 377, 406, 498A, 506 and 120-B of IPC at Police Station Farakpur, District Yamuna Nagar and all consequential proceedings arising therefrom, qua the petitioners, is quashed.”


Must Read Article : 22 Landmark Judgments where Supreme Court & Various High Courts Quash 498A Cases. How To Quash 498A

4.03.2020 – Allahabad High Court held that Bald Allegations against Relatives of Husband that too, after 11 years of alleged demand of dowry, permitting a quashing of entire proceeding of above case against the family members.  



“Learned counsel for the applicants argued that applicants are innocent. They have been falsely implicated in this very case crime number, wherein, admittedly marriage was performed in year 2007 and this report was got lodged in year 2018 i.e. after 11 years of marriage and till then, there was no complaint regarding any demand of dowry or cruelty with regard to it. Whereas, this First Information Report was lodged, with accusation of giving assault by all those eight accused persons, who are entire family members. But no medical report for injury of any grievous nature is there. Investigation resulted in submission of charge sheet for offence punishable under Sections 498A, 323, 506 IPC read with Section 3/4 of D.P. Act. Meaning thereby, it was a simple hurt. Eight persons have vehemently assaulted but she has suffered simple injury. The law laid down by Apex Court in Geeta Mehrotra and another Vs. State of U.P. and another reported in 2012 Lawsuit (SC) 716, is for such type of false implication of role of family members in a case of dowry demand and cruelty with regard to it. Hence, this application with above prayer.
Apex Court in Geeta Mehrotra Vs. State of U.P. and others (supra), while appreciating circumstances of cases of dowry demand and cruelty with regard to it, in a proceeding under Section 482 of Cr.P.C.
In the present case, report was after 11 years of marriage. There is no grievous hurt. Accused persons are family members. They are husband, Jeth, son of Jeth, Jethani, having no concern with alleged demand of dowry. Hence, there seems to be sufficient ground for considering a bald allegation against them, that too, after 11 years of alleged demand of dowry, permitting a quashing of entire proceeding of above case against the family members.
For rest of accused i.e. Jeth, son of Jeth, Jethani, the same is being allowed and proceeding of above criminal case is being quashed.”

28.02.2020 – Allahabad High Court Held that Vague and General allegations have been leveled against Father-in-law, Mother-in-law, Jeth, Jethani, Devar and Devarani. Such practice of implicating entire family members in a matrimonial dispute has clearly been deprecated in the case of Geeta Mehrotra (supra). Furthermore, opposite party No. 2 filed a divorce suit which has been decreed. As such, there is no matrimonial or otherwise any relationship in between opposite party No. 2 and applicants. For this reason also, present criminal proceedings initiated against applicants 2 to 7 cannot be sustained. 



“After hearing counsel for parties, this Court finds that opposite party No. 2 has implicated all the family members of applicant No. 1 in present criminal proceedings. Perusal of complaint copy of which has been appended as Annexure 1 is affidavit goes to show that vague and general allegations have been leveled against other family members of applicant No. 1 who is the husband of opposite party No. 2. Such practice of implicating entire family members in a matrimonial dispute has clearly been deprecated in the case of Geeta Mehrotra (supra). Furthermore, opposite party No. 2 filed a divorce suit which has been decreed. As such, there is no matrimonial or otherwise any relationship in between opposite party No. 2 and applicants. For this reason also, present criminal proceedings initiated against applicants 2 to 7 cannot be sustained.
In view of above, present application succeeds and is allowed.
Accordingly, summoning order dated 30.11.2012 passed by Metropolitan Magistrate-II, Kanpur Nagar in Complaint Case, under sections 498A, 323, 504, 506, 406 IPC, P.S. Najibabad, District Kanpur Nagar and the entire proceedings of above mentioned complaint case in so far as they relates to applicants 2 to 7 are, hereby, quashed.”


21.02.2020- Calcutta High Court held that Brother-in-Law living separately, having no specific role in complaint will not be implicated in case C.Case Quashed. 



It would not be out of place to state that the present proceedings was initiated at a stage when the complainant's daughter was 10 years old and the marriage was subsisting for 16 years. In such circumstances the observation of the Hon'ble Apex Court in Preeti Gupta's Case, which held as follows:-
".......The allegations of harassment of husband's close relations who had been living in different cities and never visited or rarely visited the place where the complainant resided would have an entirely different complexion. The allegations of the complainant are required to be scrutinized with great care and circumspection."
 Additionally in Geeta Mehrotra's case, it has been held as follows:-
"..... the factual position remains that the complaint as it stands lacks ingredients constituting the offence under Section 498-A IPC and Sections 3/4 of the Dowry Prohibition Act against the appellants who are the sister and the brother of the complainant's husband and their involvement in the whole incident appears only by way of a casual inclusion of their names. Hence, it cannot be overlooked that it would be total abuse of process of law if we were to remand the matter to the High Court to consider whether there were still any material to hold that the trial should proceed against them in spite of absence of prima facie material constituting the offence alleged against them."
Consequently, having due regard to the averments/allegations made in the petition of complaint as also the examination of the complainant and her father under Section 200 of the CrPC on solemn affirmation and the settled principles of law, I am of the opinion that further continuance of the proceedings, so far as the present petitioner is concerned, would be an abuse of the process of law and the same if allowed to continue would result in miscarriage of justice.”

30.01.2020- Punjab High Court held that Vague & General Allegations against married sister-in-law living separately will not constitute offence u/s 498a IPC. 



“9. There are a catena of judgments, one such case being Preeti Gupta and another Vs. State of Jharkhand and another 2010 (4) RCR (Crl.) 45 where it has been held by the Hon'ble Apex Court that there is unfortunate tendency to rope in all family members in the matrimonial dispute. Even in the instant case herein, a bare reading of the FIR, as such, does not disclose commission of offence under Section 498-A/406 IPC, as there are no specific allegations of either demand or entrustment of dowry qua the petitioners. Therefore, in the facts and circumstances of the case, this Court is of the considered opinion that continuing of proceedings against the petitioners in FIR would tantamount to an abuse of process of court and therefore, it is a fit case warranting interference under Section 482 of the Code of Criminal Procedure.
10. Resultantly, this petition is allowed and FIR dated 26.3.2014 under Section 498-A IPC registered at Police Station Guraya, Jalandhar and all subsequent proceedings arising out of the same qua are quashed qua the petitioner.”


16.01.2020- Allegation which are omnibus and not sufficient and not probable and do not prima facie constitute any offence and the proceeding is started to achieve the ulterior motive for wreaking vengeance, as counter blast the same can't continue and this Court under section 482 of the Cr.P.C is duty bound to set aside such proceeding. 



“8. Now days it is general tendency to implicate in-laws by the wife in case of demand of dowry just to take revenge on account of bitterness emerged on account of non-adjustment in the matrimonial house. The provision of section 498A of the IPC is not for that purpose.
xxx…..xxxx
11. Hon'ble the Apex court in the recent judgment, Rajesh Sharma and ors. vs. State of U.P. And anr., passed in criminal appeal no. 1265/2017 dated 27.7.2017 as observed in para 14, as under :-
"14. €section 498A was inserted in the statute with the laudable object of punishing cruelty at the hands of husband or his relatives against a wife particularly when such cruelty had potential to result in suicide or murder of a woman as mentioned in the statement of Objects and Reasons of the Act 46 of 1983. The expression "cruelty" in section 498A covers conduct which may drive the women to commit suicide or cause grave injury (mental or physical) or danger to life or harassment with a view to coerce her to meet unlawful demand. It is a matter of serious concern that large number of cases continue to be filed under already referred to some of the statistics from the Crime Records Bureau. This Court had earlier noticed the fact that most of such complaints are filed in the heat of the moment over trivial issues. Many of such complaints are not bona fide. At the time of filing of the complaint, implications and consequences are not visualized. At times such complaints lead to uncalled for harassment not only to the accused but also to the complainant. Uncalled for arrest may ruin the chances of settlement".
12. In view of the aforesaid enunciation of law and in the facts and circumstances of the case, in view of this Court, the instant petition deserves to be allowed as in the aforesaid circumstances if the proceedings continued against the applicants, it would amount to abuse of the process of the court and would cause grave injustice to the applicants. In the circumstances, this petition is allowed and the proceedings of the Criminal Case No. 389/2018 pending before the Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate, Punasa, District Khandwa is hereby quashed.”


08.01.2019- Non Specific & No Role in Allegation against Married Sister-in-Law & Student Brother-in-Law, Living are implicating in this case at the instant of sister and brother of petitioner/accused No.1. Therefore, in these circumstances, proceedings against them is misuse of process of law and it is appropriate to invoke the inherent jurisdiction in respect of sister-in-law & brother-in-law, so FIR and subsequent proceedings against them are quashed. 



“18 : It is revealed from the record that petitioner/ accused No.4 is married sister-in-law of respondent No.2. At the time of incident, she was pregnant, so she had come to his parental house at Vidisha for delivery. She is permanent resident of Sagar district, therefore, it is natural that petitioner/accused No.4 is living with her husband at Sagar. At the time of incident, petitioner/ accused No.4 was carrying 9 months' pregnancy, so there is no probability of threatening and torturing to respondent No.2. It appears that allegation against the petitioners/accused is concocted and she is implicating in this case at the instant of sister of petitioner/accused No.1. Respondent No.2 had lived after marriage with petitioner/accused No.1 at Raipur and some time with other petitioners/accused at Vidisha. It also appears from the record that conciliation proceedings had taken place between the parties, so it is evident that petitioner/ accused No.4 has no role in this case. Petitioner/accused No.4 casually comes to paternal house at Vidisha. Therefore, in these circumstances, proceedings against petitioner/accused No.4 is misuse of process of law and it is appropriate to invoke the inherent jurisdiction in respect of petitioner/accused No.4, so FIR and subsequent proceedings against petitioner No.4/accused are quashed.
19 : Petitioner/accused No.5 is brother-in-law of respondent No.2. Petitioner No.5/accused is a student and he is studying out of Vidisha, so he also casually comes to his house situated at Vidisha. There is no specific allegation against this petitioner/accused about demand of dowry, torturing, taunting and humiliation. Petitioner No.5/ accused is a student, so it appears that he has also been implicated in this case on the ground that he is brother of petitioner/accused No.1. Therefore, on this ground, it is appropriate case of petitioner No.5/accused to invoke the inherent jurisdiction. So, FIR and subsequent proceedings as against petitioner No.5/accused are quashed.
20 : Petitioner/accused No.1 is the husband of respondent No.2. It is true that petitionerr/accused No.1 lodged so many complaints about the misbehaviour of respondent No.2. He lodged in these complaints that respondent No.2 tried to commit suicide and she threatened to implicate all the family members in a false case. So, the respondent No.2 tortured the petitioners/ accused and his family members. He also lodged the complaint at Police Station DDU Nagar Raipur on 13.10.2018 and thereafter conciliation proceedings going on, which got unsuccessful, then petitioner/accused No.1 filed a petition for divorce under Section 13 of the Hindu Marriage Act before Principal Judge, Family Court Vidisha on 12.3.2019. Thereafter, learned Judge issued notice to the respondent No.2 to appear in the case. After receiving the notice, respondent No.2 lodged a complaint, but these facts may be investigated during trial. These facts will be proved by the evidence at the appropriate stage of trial. Petitioner No.2/ accused is father-in-law and petitioner No.3/accused is mother-in-law of respondent No.2. There is allegation about demand of dowry and humiliation, so all these facts will be proved by the evidence at the appropriate stage of trial. It is not required in the proceedings under Section 482 of Cr.P.C. to appreciate the evidence or material.
22 : Accordingly, the petition filed by the petitioners/accused under Section 482 of Cr.P.C., deserves to be and is, hereby, partly allowed. The FIR registered against the petitioners 4 & 5/accused in Police Station Harda, District Harda (MP), vide Crime No.193/2019 and all consequent proceedings stands quashed as against petitioners/accused No.4 & 5.”

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