Paid Advise

Elements of dowry death

Shivendra Pratap Singh

Advocate (Lucknow)

Online advising since Oct. 2014

33507 Advices

41371 Consultations

Reading Time:

Sati and dowry death has plagued this nation for centuries. Sati, the practice of sending a widow to her husband’s funeral pyre to burn in it. It was first outlawed under British Rule in 1829 and 1830 under the Governor-Generalship of Lord William Bentinck in the Bengal, Madras and Bombay Presidencies.

Dowry death 

It was and still a menace to our society. The Parliament responded much earlier, the Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961. By the above said Act, provides minimum sentence and penalty for the giving or receiving of dowry. This specific menace, however, was tackled by the insertion of a new provision in 1986 in IPC as section 304-B together with another new provision Section 113 B of the Evidence Act.

Elements 

  1. If a woman dies by any burns or bodily injury or otherwise than under normal circumstances 
  2. Where she dies within seven years of her marriage. Also, shows that soon before her death she was subjected to cruelty or harassment by her husband or any relative of her husband for, or in connection with, any demand for dowry.

Explanation: For this sub-section, “dowry” shall have the same meaning as in Section 2 of the Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961 (28 of 1961). (2) Whoever commits dowry death shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which shall not be less than seven years but which may extend to imprisonment for life.

Section 113-B Indian Evidence Act Presumption as to dowry death

When the question is whether a person has committed the dowry death of a woman and prosecution shows that soon before her death such woman had been subjected by such person to cruelty or harassment for, or in connection with, any demand for dowry, the Court shall presume that such person had caused the dowry death.

Explanation: for this section “dowry death” shall have the same meaning as in Section 304-B of Indian Penal Code (45 of 1860).The ingredients of the offence under Section 304-B have been stated and restated in many judgments.

Any burns or bodily injury must have caused the death of a woman or her death must have occurred otherwise than under normal circumstances. Such death must have occurred within seven years of her marriage, and soon before her death, she must have been subjected to cruelty or harassment by her husband or any relative of her husband.

Appasaheb v. the State of Maharashtra, (2007) 9 SCC 721; the Supreme Court construed the definition as it forms part of Section 304-B which is part of a penal statute. The court held that a demand for money for defraying the expenses of manure made to a young wife who in turn caused the same demand to her father would be outside the definition of dowry.

Sher Singh v. State of Haryana, 2015 the word ‘soon before’ finds a place in Section 304-B, it necessarily indicating that the demand for dowry should not be stale or an aberration of the past, but should be the continuing cause for the death under Section 304-B.

Dinesh v. State of Haryana, 2014 The expression “soon before” is a relative term as held by this Court, which is required to consider under the specific circumstances of each case and no straight-jacket formula can be laid down by fixing any time of allotment.

shivendra pratap singh advocate

Shivendra Pratap Singh

Advocate (Lucknow)

You can consult on Criminal, Civil, Matrimonial, Writ, Service matters, Property, Revenue and RERA related issues.

More For you

Threatening woman on revealing the truth to family 

Question: A man is threatening a woman on revealing the truth to her family. I'm a husband. I'm writing this for my wife. She had an affair with a person and she also helped him with money in his difficult time without informing me. Few days back she apologised...

In 498A, will my family get arrested?

Question: In 498A, will my family get arrested? My wife has filed a false case against my family. She wanted to marry her friend but due to pressure from her father she married me. There is no fault from my side but due to the whim of my wife my family is facing...

Can I file a complaint against the family court?

Question: Can I file a complaint against the family court? Asked from: Kerala You can file a complaint against the sitting subordinate court judge for his misconduct or dishonest conduct in dealing lawsuits. But you must have credible and clinching evidence to prove...

Section 383 Indian Penal Code: Extortion

Section 383: Extortion Whoever intentionally puts any person in fear of any injury to that person, or to any other, and thereby dishonestly induces the person so put in fear to deliver to any person any property or valuable security or anything signed or sealed which...

My sister is being mental harassed by her ex-boyfriend 

Question: My sister was in a relationship for 7 yrs and after that she decided to part ways with boyfriend due to some issues. My sister is being mental harassed by her ex-boyfriend. She was informed this in 2020 and after that asked him not to contact him. He visited...

My boyfriend has exploited me by spending money on me

Question: My boyfriend and I had a relationship for 6 yrs. My boyfriend has exploited me by spending money on me and I spent too little as I was a student. We were both happy because he spent a lot of money on me and bore my study expenses.  But now I am unhappy with...

Kanoonirai has been advising in legal issues since October 2014. You can consult a lawyer through online media, telephonic consultation and video conferencing.

Contact

mail[at]kanoonirai.com
+91-91400-4[nine][six]54