498A Quash after Chargesheet 27.09.2022- Madras High Court-No Prima Facie material available against Parents-in-law and Sister-in-law. F.I.R Quashed.

 498A Quash after Chargesheet 27.09.2022- Madras High Court-No Prima Facie material available against Parents-in-law and Sister-in-law. F.I.R Quashed.

498A Quash after Chargesheet 27.09.2022
498A Quash after Chargesheet 27.09.2022



498A Quash after Chargesheet 27.09.2022- In this article, Madras High Court held that the case against the parents-in-law and sister-in-law have been launched with malicious intention and without any prima facie material available against them. The inquiry report of the District Social Welfare officer indicates that the In-laws had not caused any cruelty to the wife and as far as dowry harassment is concerned, the statements of witnesses are contrary to the independent report of the district welfare officer. Therefore, criminal proceedings against In-laws are hereby quashed.


Case Brief- 498A Quash after Chargesheet 27.09.2022


According to the facts mentioned in the report, the marriage between the wife and her husband was solemnized on 19.11.2011.


It is also stated that five months after marriage, the wife came to know that her husband is a vagabond, drunkard, not gainfully employed, and had spent all the stridhana property for his drinking and wayward life.


It is further stated that when that was questioned by the wife, her In-laws assaulted her and caused cruelty.


Case Brief- 498A Quash after Chargesheet 27.09.2022


The wife also stated that her In-laws forced her to bring more dowry and also threatened her that they will burn her alive and make the world believe that she has committed suicide.


She further stated that, in the said circumstances, she was forced to leave her matrimonial home, and taking advantage of their separation, her husband alleged to have been married to another woman.


Upon this, the wife lodged a report at All Women Police Station for the offense under Section 498A IPC and Section 4 of the Dowry Protection Act against her parents-in-law and sister-in-law, and the case was registered by the All Women Police Station and later, a charge sheet was registered to 498A, 494, 506(1) and 406 IPC against them.

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Arguments- 498A Quash after Chargesheet 27.09.2022 


The advocate, appearing on behalf of the parents-in-law and sister-in-law of the wife, submitted that on 25.11.2012, some third parties came to the wife’s matrimonial home and intimidated her father-in-law and his family members.


So a complaint was given to the Inspector of police, on 29.11.2012 and the case was registered. After inquiry, in spite of an undertaking given by the parents-in-law and sister-in-law that they are ready to have a separate nucleus family for the wife and her husband, the wife was not ready for the same.


It was also submitted that the wife filed a divorce petition under Section 23 of the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act against her husband and her mother-in-law and sister-in-law. But the said Domestic Violence Petition was later quashed by the court.

 

Arguments- 498A Quash after Chargesheet 27.09.2022


While so, the wife arrayed the parents-in-law and sister-in-law alleging cruelty and harassment as well as a bigamous marriage by her husband and filed a complaint on 10.09.2013.


The advocate further submitted that the District Social Welfare Officer has given a categorical finding in her report dated 26.04.2018 that the marriage between the wife and her husband took place on 18.11.2010, and they live together hardly for three years and for the past five years, they are living separately.


Meanwhile, the husband disappeared, and he was not seen by her parents-in-law and sister-in-law till he was produced during the inquiry.


Arguments- 498A Quash after Chargesheet 27.09.2022


District Social Welfare Officer also observed that there is no evidence of dowry harassment and the parents-in-law and sister-in-law of the wife have no contact with her husband.


So, he submitted that neither for dowry harassment nor for bigamous marriage, there is no material available.


Therefore, he prayed to quash the criminal complaint against the parents-in-law and sister-in-law.


Arguments- 498A Quash after Chargesheet 27.09.2022


On the other hand, the advocate appearing on behalf of the wife submitted that the parents-in-law and sister-in-law were living under the same roof along with the wife and her husband when she was driven out of the matrimonial home by causing cruelty.


He also submitted that the second marriage of her husband was secretly solemnized with the connivance of her parents-in-law and sister-in-law because another woman whom the husband married is a close relative of the In-laws.


Therefore, he prayed that the parents-in-law and sister-in-law are liable to be tried for the offense under section 498A, 406, 494 IPC, and section 4 of the Dowry Protection Act.

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Court's Opinion- 498A Quash after Chargesheet 27.09.2022


It was stated that statement of witnesses recorded under section 16(3) of Cr. P. C on perusal indicates that the husband who married the wife in the year 2010, get separated from her in the year 2013, and the complaint, which was given in the year 2013, had been registered, and the final report was filed on 20.05.2018.


It was stated that the inquiry report of the District Social Welfare Officer, dated 26.04.2018 indicates that the parents-in-law and sister-in-law had not caused any cruelty to the wife, and they were not privy to the alleged second marriage solemnized between the husband and another woman.


It was also stated that out of the 11 witnesses listed in the annexure, there is no indication to substantiate the charge of the Bigamous marriage.


Court's Opinion- 498A Quash after Chargesheet 27.09.2022


As far as the dowry harassment is concerned, the witnesses have spoken about separation in the year 2013 itself and all these witnesses are related to the wife.


Further, it was stated that the statements of these witnesses are contrary to the independent report of the District Welfare Officer.


In view of the above discussion, it was held that the case against the parents-in-law and sister-in-law have been launched with malicious intention without any prima facie material available.

Therefore, the criminal original petition is allowed and F.I.R against them is hereby quashed.

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Conclusion- 498A Quash after Chargesheet 27.09.2022 


In this article, Madras High Court held that the report of the district social welfare officer indicates that the parents-in-law and sister-in-law had not caused any cruelty to the wife.


It was also held that the case against the In-laws has been launched with malicious intention and no prima facie material is available against them.


It was also stated that the In-laws were not privy to the alleged second marriage of the husband with another woman and as far as the dowry harassment is concerned, the statements of witnesses are contrary to the independent report of the district social welfare officer.


Therefore, F.I.R against petitioners is hereby quashed.



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