Domestic violence is a sort of abuse which happens in a personal relationship. It can happen between spouses, boyfriends and girlfriends, ex-partners etc. Although mostly women suffer from domestic violence, it can be an abuse by a woman against a man also. It can even happen between people who are not living together. It can happen in gay or lesbian relationships. The abuser tries to gain control over another person and he may use threats, fear, and bullying for this purpose. The early signs of abuse include acts of jealousy, possessiveness, and control which may happen after starting of a relationship. With time when a relationship becomes more serious, the abuse may get worse. The abuse can be physical, emotional and sexual in nature. Sometimes abuse is also seen in teens that are dating. Domestic violence happens when one partner abuses the other in an intimate relationship. In an Indian context, domestic violence basically refers to the use of force or the act of abusing a woman. But now this concept is changing.
Physical abuse includes less severe acts like mere slapping, throwing, shoving etc. At the same time, it also includes very aggressive acts like forced sexual intercourse or beatings etc.
Emotional abuse includes social isolation, control over physical activity, constantly humiliating the victim etc. It does not matter how often abuse occurs, but this victim always makes the victim feel fear. The victim cannot live freely.
Domestic violence has become a reality of our society. There can be many reasons with a person to stay in an abusive relationship. Some of the reasons may be the belief that abusive partner will change, guilt over the failure of the relationship, attachment to partner or economic dependence on the abuser, lack of job skills and the belief that law enforcement will not take her seriously.
Cause Of Action
A woman can file a suit for domestic violence if:
- She has been bodily injured or beaten for the demand of dowry;
- She is compelled to terminate her pregnancy because the child inside the womb is a female i.e. she has been a victim of female infanticide;
- She has been wrongfully restrained or confined;
- She has been a victim of the cruelty of her husband.
- She has been mental, emotionally or physically tortured.
However, if a wife has filed a false case against man then he can take the following steps to protect himself and his family:
- Dispose of his property in name of others and recover it after the suit is over.
- Make separate residence proofs
- Collect proofs for adultery by wife by installing cameras
- File quashing of FIR/ quashing of criminal complaint/ quashing of the order under Section 319 of CrPC.
A person can file a suit for domestic violence in India under Domestic Violence Act, Indian Penal Code and Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC).
- You can file a complaint under domestic violence act against your husband and in-laws ;
- You can claim maintenance, right to stay in a shared household or alternative accommodation;
- And also seek a protection order if necessary.
Section 3 of the Domestic violence act, 2005 states what constitutes domestic violence.
The victim can lodge a police complaint against the husband and in-laws under Section 498A of IPC which deals with cruelty.
The complaint can be written on a plain white paper.
Remedies In Law
- Section 304B of the Indian Penal Code states that if a woman has been a victim of dowry death i.e. cruelty coupled with harassment for the demand of dowry preceding the death and within seven years of marriage then husband will be punishable with imprisonment for a term not less than 7 years and which may extend to life imprisonment.
- Section 313-316 of IPC deals with the offense of female infanticide i.e. compelled termination of pregnancy of a woman.
- Section 305-306 of IPC are related to abetment of suicide and 340,349 of IPC with wrongful confinement and wrongful restraint.
- Section 498 of IPC deals with a cruelty which also comes under the heading of domestic violence.
The Domestic Violence Act,2005 also extends its protection to mothers or sisters also living in a household.
In India, laws are there for the protection of women from domestic violence but not for men yet.
What a victim of domestic violence should do
- Immediately call 100 or 1091(women emergency helpline number) to report the situation.
- Write down the police report or incident number to have a record of it.
- One can seek medical attention if required.
- One can move to domestic violence shelter as stated under Section 6 of the protection of women from Domestic Violence act, 2005.
- Seek the support of people, you have trust or who would keep your privacy such as a friend, a family member, a neighbor etc. So that they could act as a witness in your bad times.
- One should have the safety plan to protect herself from daily violence.
- File for a protection order as stated under Section 18 of Domestic Violence act so that the abuser can stay away from you.
One can also seek help of the below mentioned NGO’s if he or she wants, contact details are mentioned below: –
STD CODE: 011
- ALL INDIA WOMEN’S CONFERENCE – 23381165
- JWP JOINT WOMEN’S PROGRAMME – 24314821
- STREEBAL – 26164113
- SHAKTI SHALINI – 24312483
- SAKSHI – 24643946, 24623295
Domestic Violence Section 12 Complaint Format
IN THE COURT OF DISTRICT JUDGE,
IN THE MATTER OF:
IN THE MATTER OF:
W/O SHRI _______________
- SHRI ____________
- SHRI _______________
S/o late Shri ___________
- SMT ______________________
W/o SHRI _____________
APPLICATION FORMAT IS STATED UNDER SECTION 12 OF THE PROTECTION OF WOMEN FROM DOMESTIC VIOLENCE ACT 2005 (43 of 2005)