Vague allegations regarding harassment prima facie do not constitute offence u/s 498A IPC

Vague allegations regarding harassment prima facie do not constitute offence u/s 498A IPC

Gudimetla Srinivasulu Vs The State of Andhra Pradesh

Andhra Pradesh HC

22/03/2022

CRIMINAL PETITION No. 1487 OF 2022

About/from the judgment:

The High Court ruled that when there are no specific allegations made against the relatives of husband in a dowry harassment case, then it prima facie does not constitute an offence under Section 498A of Indian Penal Code.

Brief Facts of the case

A case under provisions of Indian Penal Code i.e. 498A (punishment for husband or relative of husband of a woman subjecting her to cruelty), 306 (abetment to suicide) r/w 34 (Common intention) was registered against the petitioners.

The Criminal Petition was filed under Section 438 of Code of Criminal Procedure to enlarge the petitioners on bail in the event of their arrest.

The first accused was the husband of the deceased. The petitioners who are second and third accused were the parents of first accused. It was contended that the husband as well the parents had subjected the deceased to cruelty with illegal demands. Unable to bear the harassment, she had committed suicide by hanging.

The petitioners/accused would submit that no specific allegations were made against them who were the parents of the accused husband. It was submitted that only vague allegations were made against them and they were falsely implicated in the crime. Therefore, they prayed for grant of anticipatory bail.

The Prosecution submitted that there were certain allegations that were made against the petitioners stating that they used to harass the deceased as they did not like her marrying their son and unable to bear such harassment, she had committed suicide.

Court's observation

The court observed that from the record, there were no specific allegations made against the parents of the accused husband regarding the alleged harassment said to have been caused by them to the deceased making any demand for any additional dowry.

The only allegation that was made was that the petitioners did not like the deceased marrying their son and as such they used to make comments against her in this regard and used to harass her. The said allegations prima facie did not cause constitute any offence punishable under Section 498A IPC. Except the said vague allegation, there were no specific allegations in respect of making illegal demands for additional dowry.

The court in the facts of the case, allowed the Criminal Petition and granted the pre-arrest bail.

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