The other side of DOWRY

 

This is an interesting piece of news I read about cranky wives using the law to their advantage in order to extort their poor husbands. For the first time, I realised there is another side to this whole Dowry related shit that goes on in India. It is not always the male side, the females now are getting all powered up and intelligent to make money and abuse the law which was formulated to protect them. Instead, we have rising cases of poor husbands lying unprotected at the mercy of their stupid wives. The %ge might be low, but this misuse is unexpected and alarming.

Here is the piece from www.khaleejtimes.com

 

Indian husbands become victims of dowry law abuse
(Reuters)
12 December 2006

NEW DELHI – Indian husbands are becoming victims of an anti-dowry law which is being misused by their wives to extort money, a group representing men who have been accused of dowry abuse said on Tuesday.

Dowries — often jewellery, expensive clothing, motorcars and money — are given in India by the bride’s family to the groom and his parents, traditionally to ensure the bride will be comfortable in her new home.

The custom, outlawed more than four decades ago but still widely practiced, is often exploited with the groom’s family demanding more money in return for not abusing the bride.

But members of 498a.org — a group representing thousands of men and their families named — claim there are growing numbers of false cases being registered under the anti-dowry law or Section 498a of the Indian Penal Code that seeks to protect women.

“There are thousands of men and their families who are victims of the abuse of this law, who are locked up in jail and undergo severe mental, emotional and financial and social trauma as a result,” Anupama Singh, a member of 498a.org, named after the dowry law told Reuters.

Singh said the main reason for registering false cases was to extort money, or gain custody of children during divorce.

The number of false cases against husbands was growing by 20 percent every year as “unscrupulous women are realising there is a money to be made by the divorce industry,” he said.

According to statistics 498a.org obtained from the ministry of home affairs, 18 percent of the 58,319 cases of dowry abuse registered in 2005 were dropped due to frivolous grounds.

But women’s rights activists say there is no clear statistics to prove that law which came into force in 1983 is being intentionally abused.

“489a is one of the most important tools in the hands of Indian women who have suffered abuse,” said Yogesh Mehta, legal officer for the National Commission for Women.

“The Commission is of the view that so far we don’t have clear statistics that the law is being intentionally misused.”

Police say the most common form of domestic violence is dowry-related and that there one case of cruelty committed by the husband or his relatives every nine minutes in the country.

Flawed

But 498a.org says the anti-dowry law, as well as a new domestic violence act which came into force in October is biased in favour of women as no evidence is required by the wife to prove that she has been harassed or abused.

“Under the law, the accused can be arrested and jailed without warrant or investigation, the complaint cannot be withdrawn by the petitioner and it is non-bailable,” said J.K. Grover, a member of 498a.org.

“It’s ridiculous. We don’t want to scrap the laws, we just want to ensure that it is fair and balanced. The government needs to plug all the loop holes in both the laws.”

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11 thoughts on “The other side of DOWRY

  1. Vi says:

    Somehow, I’m not surprised. Some people, regardless of sex, are always ready to take advantage of a situation.

  2. Hi,

    The fact of the matter is that the dowry law is being abused to such an extent that the law has been called “legal terrorism” by the Supreme Court of India and it has urged to Govt. to change the law. Statistics show that more than 90% of the dowry cases are false. Thay are just being used to harrass the husand and the irony is that 25% of the approx 130,000 people arrested in India due to this law are women. Even children and senior citizens are arrested. The situation is really pathetic and to top it all the Govt. has come up with a domestic violence law which is so biased that a man can be jailed just on the word of the woman even if there is no evidence to prove her claim !!

    Please visit http://savemarriages.wordpress.com for more information.

    Regards,
    Nishant

  3. Neha Kumar says:

    Ohh!! Now this is scary!!!

  4. Anup says:

    i don kno…wats written in tht article…coz i feel its too boring…Dowry…ohhh…cant even have the patience to read…but yahh i do have my thoughts abt it…we’ll i wudnt ask for money or gifts frm my would be wife or her parents when i get married…but wat if they are well off…and the lady brings along gifts frm her side….we’ll of course if i have those at my home i would ask her parents not to send them….i wudnt take money…no no…id have enuff money to feed her and keep her happy …when i get married….but yahh if they are well off and she brings in gifts i wont deny…

  5. Anup says:

    exchange of gifts …i must add is an age old custom in indian marriages…altho later on it was given the form of DOWRY…now if its one way its bad…but two ways…no probs bro…

  6. pegasus says:

    if u r worried about dowry law…. think about the rape law….

    you break-up with your gf, or you ignore the advances of a girl… and next thing you know is that you are in the jail.

  7. VALENTRA says:

    We had always thought that women are the weaker sex. NOW WE KNOW THE REAL WEAKER SEX.

  8. Atul Rai says:

    Dowry Prohibition Act, 498A is the most abused law in India. While the intentions were good, it became a nightmare because of the weaknesses of the police and the legal system in India. Police had no resources to verify whether there was any truth in the complaint by the wife and so they did the easiest thing, i.e., arrest the family of the husband. Then the court system, already clogged with numerous cases was saddled with these dowry cases that took years and years to resolve.

    A fundamental change that is needed is that there must be a prima facie basis for registering a complaint. Second, there must be a sever penalty for filing a false report. In fact because 95% or more cases are false, the real sufferers are true victims of dowry. And the false complainants use it as a tool to blackmail the family of husband.

    My ex-wife, Veena Bhatnagar, who was living in US at the time of our marriage, ran away with my new born daughter, after filing for divorce in US courts. She lied and lied, her lies are so blatant that it is amazing that police in India was so naive as to believe her. We suspect that the police was under political pressure from my ex-wife’s political connections (one of her brother’s friend was a federal minister at the time).

    There is an FBI warrant for the arrest of my ex-wife, and a criminal case is pending against her in Waukesha County in Wisconsin. I have not seen my daughter since 1995, the year she was born. The US court has awarded me the sole custody of my daughter since 1996.

    After absconding to India, and after the courts in USA had filed contempt charges against her, she filed a case against my parents under 498A in India. The facts of this case are a poster child for how this law is blatantly abused and why changes are needed. Clearly, the 498A case against my parents was a retaliation for our marriage gone awry for the fact of the matter is that my parents were not involved in our marriage, we never lived in India, and she was in physical contact with my parents for less than 72 hours most of which were the ceremonies of marriage (we were married in India so that her relatives could attend the wedding, and were subsequently married in a civil ceremony in United States). So the physical abuse by parents is inconceivable.

    After two weeks of marriage, my ex-wife’s mother wrote me a letter about how kind we were and about how proud she was of my ideals of anti-dowry (I had even refused to take the teeka money during the marriage ceremony, it is on marriage video). Letter by the ex-wife’s mother is clear proof that nothing happened during marriage in violation of 498A, and the filing of complaint, more than two years after marriage was an afterthought to harass my family.

    While the case against my father progressed (the case against my mom was dropped right away for lack of evidence by high court, it did not have the courage to dismiss the case against my dad.) During this period, he was approached many times to compromise but he was adamant to fight it out in court. Irony is that after filing the case, my ex-wife used delay tactics; she would not appear in the court. If you have lied through your teeth, like my ex-wife, you would not be looking forward to lie in court and then be cross-examined by the attorney of the defendant. It is one thing to lie in a police station, shed a few crocodile tears, asked your political henchmen to pressure police station and have police register a case. It is a lot different to face the inconsistencies of your claim and then be exposed as a liar in the court.

    It is interesting to note that neither the police, nor my ex-wife ever completed their statement in the court over a ten-year period. In the interim, my father went to every court hearing (or was represented by an attorney in his absence) to clear his name. During this period, my ex-wife failed to appear in court (or her attorney failed to appear) about 90% of the time. In the end, the court realized how my ex-wife was misusing the court system, and it dismissed the case against my father. I am proud of my father for fighting this case on principle, rather than cave in to demands of my ex-wife. Her attorneys had indicated that we could settle this case by paying $200,000 USD to my ex-wife and by giving up the claim of custody of my daughter.

    There is no punishment in Indian legal system against the likes of my ex-wife who clearly filed this case falsely, to “get-even”, and to blackmail. I think the law should be modified so as to punish those who file false complaint under this law. That will reduce the abuse of this law for blackmailing husband’s family and filing of false cases. This will allow the limited resources of police and the court system to focus on punishing the real culprits. The likes of my ex-wife do a disservice to real dowry victims.

    Atul Rai

    Note: The facts stated in this letter can be verified on government websites and court documents. I will be glad to furnish details to interested parties. –ar.

  9. Abhijit Basu says:

    Its high time to put a stop to the abuse and misuse of 498a which finishes off innocent men.

  10. rajes says:

    Hey anup
    the whole issue of using dorwy law 498a is to get even..
    whether you take dowry or no dowry
    when the marriage is on edge..
    thats the twist you get..
    you think you will not get into trouble by not taking dowry then you are in comma..
    you need to understand these women use 498a to get even…
    there will be always issues in marriage ..
    you dont go to police to file 498a…

  11. Subu says:

    Irrespective of what the courts have set out about no-arrest, avoiding misuse of law etc etc arrests and threat of arrest do happen day in and day out…just on the basis of the woman’s word.

    Further The DV act makes marriage a very dangerous proposition in India

    Males are the biggest victims of the marriage industry.

    To add to this Sohaib and a 1000s of others have added to the morass by paying huge ransoms to women who file false cases and harass them

    More rape cases (recent ones, where consensual sex has now become rape) at http://bit.ly/cnt3td

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