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Men being harassed in false dowry cases

January 22, 2008

Harassed husbands. This is being talked about in the press quite a lot these days and yesterday there was this rather stark headline: Harassed husbands take to the streets. Quoting from the article:

The tables have turned. Husbands harassed by their wives have finally realised the futility of taking things lying down…Beginning with Bangalore on Saturday, they are taking to the streets under the banner of Save Indian Family Foundation (SIFF). The SIFF is about 7 years old and has 8000 members.

Draconian laws?
It is being alleged that men are increasingly being implicated in false cases under the Domestic Violence Act, 2005, and anti-dowry law (of 498a). These Acts have been criticized because they are not gender neutral. The anti-dowry law is seen to be draconian as that section is “non-bailable, non-compoundable (complaint that can’t be quashed) and cognizable (arrests without investigation or warrants) on a report from a woman or close relative. This has been compared to the Prevention of Terrorist Activities Act as it is cognizable. POTA was scrapped.

Much ado about nothing?
However, there are those who believe that much ado is being made about nothing and that these false cases are very few in number…but if this was the case a few years ago, I think the situation has changed now. First let’s take a look at both statistics – those on dowry cases and those on false cases. Please note that these are government statistics and got from reputable websites. However I cannot say with a hundred percent confidence that they are comparable…

Statistics say women at the receiving end where dowry is concerned
It is believed that on an average one Indian woman commits suicide every four hours over a dowry dispute. National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) statistics say:

2006: 2,276 female suicides due to dowry disputes, six a day on an average. 7,618 cases were registered under Dowry Death.
2005: 2,305 female suicides in 2005.6,787 cases under Dowry Death.
2004: 2,585 dowry cases were registered across the country and 7,026 were registered under Dowry Death.
One case is registered almost every hour under Dowry Death, which includes suicides as well as murders.

False Cases filed by women against husbands (Official figures):
Under Dowry Deaths:
2004: 365
2005: 312
2006: 297

Under the Dowry Prohibition Act.
2004: 167
2005: 238
2006: 210

The percentages (of false cases as compared to genuine ones) are very low, well below 5 percent.

But there are those who feel that these false cases are the tip of the iceberg. The Save Indian Family Foundation, quotes government data which shows that “134,757 people were arrested under the anti-dowry law but only 5,739 people were convicted.” Well, I don’t think that a lack of conviction in a dowry case necessarily means that the accused is innocent. If it is proved that it is a false case, then it’s a different matter.

Why Indian men kill themselves
The Save Indian Family Foundation has also argued that, as compared with women, nearly twice as many married men in India (up to 52,483) take their own lives – being “unable to withstand verbal, emotional, economic and physical abuse”. Well, while it is true that more men commit suicide than women, the reasons as to why people commit suicide have been well researched which I have written about here.

In India, fewer men kill themselves as compared to those in other countries. For example, in countries like Australia, Canada and the US – about 3-4 men kill themselves as compared to 1 woman! And in Denmark, Germany, Sweden, Switzerland, Austria, France, S. Korea and Japan – about 2-3 men kill themselves as compared to one woman. Why more men kill themselves as compared to women is something that psychologists and sociologists have not been able to answer fully, although economic pressure is considered an important factor, assuming that there is no mental illness. The burden of providing for a family and that of success falls on men, and their self-esteem is invariably tied up with worldly success. Women on the other hand tend kill themselves more often because of abuse. Overall, people kill themselves for very complex societal and psychological reasons, again assuming the absence of mental illness.

Interestingly, there is research which indicates that more women attempt suicide as compared to men.

Why women (possibly) make false cases against innocent husbands
It could be a way to get the best deal during divorce or simply arm-twist their man to toe the line. A false case is usually registered when the couple is unhappy and the wife uses the dowry law to get back against her husband and in-laws if she believes that they have ill-treated her. I personally know one case like this, that of a relative of a friend, and this is perhaps why I believe that such cases (falsely implicating husbands) are becoming common. This woman was in a bad marriage where her in-laws would interfere with everything she did, and her husband was supporting them, not her. She wanted a divorce but her husband refused. She, an educated professional, threatened her husband, telling him that he better let her go or she would file a dowry case against him. She got her way…so yes, the dowry act is being used as a blackmail tool by some women.

We cannot deny the fact that women have less power in Indian society, and unfortunately, the dowry act has become a weapon…

Those who trump up cases need to be penalised
De-criminalizing the taking of dowry cannot be the solution (a demand from mens groups), not when over 95 percent of dowry cases are genuine and murder is involved. Womens organisations are against diluting the law and Brinda Karat, AIDWA president has said:

It’s taken decades for women to pluck up the courage to use these laws and now they want to dilute them…there may well be a few cases of abuse. But dowry-related violence is so horrific that these laws are life-savers for women and it would be disastrous to dilute them. Dowry-hungry men will think they can get away with murder, literally…

However, stringent punishment for those filing a false case is required. As of now, there is no penalty for filing a false case. False cases bring disrepute to the law itself.

Men are fighting back
Womens groups are reluctant to compromise, but mens groups aren’t taking it lying down. They are trying to pressurise the government to change the dowry laws and the demonstration on the streets is just an example. Today there are about 60 websites dedicated to “promoting the well-being of men in India.

But at any given time we need to remember that women who suffer from dowry -related harassment are often not empowered. Less than half of the women in India can read or write, compared with 75% of men. In the past 20 years more than 10 million female foetuses have been aborted…we need to keep this in mind before the anti-dowry law is changed.

98 Comments leave one →
  1. January 22, 2008 9:49 am

    On a lighter note it makes me wonder – “Ghor Kaliyugua ayaa hia ” 🙂

  2. Raj permalink
    January 22, 2008 11:11 am


    I am happy that this article has been written by a woman because it is very,very difficult to see the other side of the story when the (assumed) predator and prey switch sides.

    The SIFF believes that men take their lives “being unable to withstand verbal, emotional, economic and physical abuse” (presumably) from their wives and in-laws.I do not know about the physical abuse part (though images of women with a flour rolling stick may come to the mind 🙂 ),but economic,verbal and emotional abuse can be very draining even for men who are normally emotionally challenged.

    Why does the SIFF call itself the Save Indian Family Foundation? Why not Save Indian Men Foundation? Are they looking for support from women from the man’s side who are more often than not primarily responsible for sustaining the nasty practice of dowry?

    Having stated the above,I want to make it clear that though the anti-dowry law is stringent,very few women use it,let alone misuse it.Those who use the law as a blackmail tool usually belong to the upper class who can afford to file a case against their in-laws.The vast majority of women undergo daily abuse,suffering and humiliation at the hands of greedy in-laws.If they are unable to bear it any longer,they commit suicide 😦

    This abuse is not only about dowry,but also about the inability (if any) to bear a child,even if it is the man’s fault.Sometimes,the woman gets abused if she is not able to bear a male child,even if women have nothing to do with determining the sex of their child.

    The plight of some women who are abused by their NRI husbands and in-laws is terrible even if the women are usually well educated in such cases.

    The advent of the nuclear family,granting of equal inheritance rights to women and the growing number of ‘love marriages’ as opposed to ‘arranged marriages’ (not to speak of ‘forced marriages’) do not seem to have had much of an impact on the nauseating practice called dowry.It seems that women are born to suffer in societies like ours 😦

  3. Vivek Khadpekar permalink
    January 22, 2008 11:59 am


    //…The plight of some women who are abused by their NRI husbands and in-laws is terrible even if the women are usually well educated in such cases…//

    Although what you say is sometimes very true, I maintain that a lot of the blame for this lies with families who are desperately keen to arrange such matches for their daughters, and rush into alliances with unknown or inadequately checked-out parties — just to enhance their social prestige at home by being able to boast of a trophy son-in-law based in “phoren”. This trend now seems to be in decline among at least the better-off class of Gujaratis — who not so long back were at the top of the league in bagging such trophies. All said and done, if you have the means, life in India is much more comfortable with all the security nets and family support that we can now take for granted in home territory.

    The other despicable part of the story is that first-generation Indian settlers abroad are not in sync with the value systems of the society of which they have voluntarily become members. When it comes to finding a daughter-in-law, they still look out the “educated”, “cultured”, “beautiful”, “virgin”, “homely[!]” girl from India, who will bow and scrape to her husband’s parents, obey and respect them, cook the kind of food hubby’s mother cooks, wash the dishes and do the laundry (of course there are home appliances aplenty for this) bear at least one male child within a year of marriage, and all the other things that her grandmother and mother did. And the young husbands are obviously too much of wimps to assert themselves.

    • jaaz permalink
      September 10, 2010 1:52 am

      my family too are suffering with false 498a case…my brother got married to a lawyer and her father also a lawyer…before the rituals after marriage didn’t finish she started showing her colours…she visited my parents place 4 times after marriage and total she stayed 15 days every visit she stayed 3 to 4 days…

      all the time she will b in phone call..never interacts with my parents jus comes out of her room for food..we are 3…1 brother and 2 sisters… my sister,brother works in chennai…
      and i live inUS after marriage…i was pregnant and cudn’t travel international…so i didn’t attand my brothers marraige..donno am fortunate or misfortunate…

      the torcher she has done to my sister,brother and my parents was unbelievable…
      i jus spoke to her twice over phone after marriage…since i was going thru my pragnancy last days i use to be very tired and sleepless so had no patience to hav long calls over phone late nights so i use to aviod phone calls…

      never she listens to my brother,never interacts with my sister nor parents…
      she leftmy parents place after last day of ritual with her parents saying she will b back in 2 days…she didn’t after that thr was words exchanging thru calls between my brothr and her…
      my parents tried thr best to get tht girl back…after 3 months she filed 498a case on my bro,sis and my parents..

      some how she left me,my baby and my hubby…

      she and father being lawyers tried hard to not get bail for my family…thy spoiled ever lawyer and even police are in thr hands…as the FIR is filed in her town…all lawyers and police r in thr hands…

      my family need to travel 5 hrs to reach her town…lot of money exchanged…to get bail…my brother still need to get bail..until my brother gets his bail my parents n sis need to attend in police station…every time thy attend thr… police ask for xtra money once refused to pay
      thy tored signed paper n started harrassing tht will show as u didn’t attend…

      and our lawyer ask my parents to attend to court directly…and after tht the other visit thy directly went to court..thr police started dragging my father tht thy hav another arrest warrent on him…tht is attempt to murder this time…every visit…thy hav lot of harrassment from girls side n police…my brother got bail some how…but before my brother surrender himself my father got another arrest warrent…

      the points she quoted in FIR were totally pointless n baseless…
      the second warrent on my father is totally to stop my father to collect bail papers of my brother…now both are helpless now another bail for my father , we are puzzled wht else cases she can file in coming days..thr place is very unsafe for my brother n family…
      before this case one of the girls relative attacked my brother n warned tht he will see my sister…coz of this 498a case my brother cudn’t file case on his relative

      donno what to do…we are totally helpless
      my parents are suffering a lot..had lot of health issues mental tension,sleepless nights…
      everytime i call india i hav somethg to hear bad..n sometimes am not able to reach them..coz of this warrents..i have been hospitalised twice after baby coz of stress n restless ness and hyper tension…with small baby am facing most trouble some days in my life….

      jaaz, I do sympathise with you but unless you talk to your sister in law and hear her side it is not easy to judge. As you said, you were away and had no time to talk to her. You have lived in the US and I presume you have lived independently without pressure to conform to Indian society expectations from a daughter in law. Parents of the boy expect a lot from the daughter in law, even in little things and not always can she oblige. Some girls are just introverts. However even introverted people can be brought into the family when they are showered with love and attention, which ofcourse rarely happens in the Indian scenario. While your claim that she has filed a false case must be right, she probably has a grudge against your family. I am not saying that she is right or wrong. Simply that problems need to be sorted out. – Nita.

      • tink permalink
        September 22, 2011 4:15 pm

        hi,dear i’m also facing same prblm bt our condition is little bit different and we took grt action against her , earlier ……look first try to collect more and more information about her …abt her college life about her character ,about their family background and so on ….than ask your parents side to file case against her i.e is section 9 this is the only way to protect your one’s against 498a ……look she file case against u & your hubby ….bcoz u were not with them and don’t ever try to call her if u need to call make sure tht recording of conversation is going on .and who told u tht your side can’t file any case or report even your sister can file DV against them …….well try to do all & further if need any help u can ask here only ….& with the same time try to boast ur family ……….if they r not wrong no need to be demoralize & threaten

  4. January 22, 2008 12:06 pm

    Great article you have in here…
    I must say that I have a hell lotta respect for a woman like you… Its very rare to see such unbiased opinion these days…
    Anyways keep up the good work!

  5. January 22, 2008 12:47 pm

    I think that law should be fair . to both accused and the accuser.
    DVA is not – cause.
    1 Somewhere it tries to make the process of justice a punishment in itself (forget being sentenced to jail by a judge, now a family can be sentenced to jail by an accuser) … this happens in many (not so fair) laws … i think it should not happen
    2. it also lowers the standard of proof dangerously
    3. It negates the natural justice of each person being treated equal (unless shown to be unreliable)
    4. The fact that more women are illetrate/unaware etc ..means that mostly aware and educated women will use the law… countering the argument that women need a slanted law like DVA because they are unaware or uneducated

    My opposition is not with the punishment … if society considers any kind of violence to be bad it can set very harsh punishment for violence … but when society lowers the need of evidence and need for crime to be established before punishment is meted, then society is doing travesty of justice … the effect is not only on individuals who get a raw deal … but the system of law .. which gets weakened .

    Beating once wife (or husband) or torturing is very bad. and society should punish such violent people . I am not against abused wives (or husband). … I am against the shortcut (DVA) being proposed to deal with the problem of wife-beaters escaping punishment.

    Problem 1 is ineffective investigation mechanism . (police doing a incompetent/unprofessional job in finding out the facts of a case and presenting it to the court …for various reasons)
    Problem 2 is delayed justice .. because of slow moving justice system ..the delay prevents people from volunteering as witnesses and gives time for witness to get intimidated/frustrated enough to turn hostile/opt out.

    DVA counters Problem1 by lowering burden of proof and Problem 2 by making the process of justice (complaint, trial) a very big punishment in itself.

    In life, unlike maths, two negatives do not make a positive … domestic violence is a negative but so is DVA … together they will not make a positive and happy society

  6. Vivek Khadpekar permalink
    January 22, 2008 2:30 pm


    I unfortunately did not read your original post closely before responding to what was essentially an aside in Raj’s comment. These are my observations:

    By “anti-dowry law (of 498a)” I presume you mean Section 498A of the Indian Penal Code. Similarly, by Domestic Violence Act, 2005, I presume you mean the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005. It is important to note that only the latter is an Act. The former is not a law in its own right but a prescribed procedure for penal action under specified cicumstances.


    Further, PWDVA 2005 is a civil and not a criminal law. It is meant to provide relief to the aggrieved party, NOT TO PUNISH THE ACCUSED. A woman invoking it is not dependent on the police or a lawyer. She can directly approach the court. Except when there is a breach of protection orders (which is a cognisble offence), no arrest can be made under this law. At the same time, PWDVA can be invoked simultaneously with other proceedings instituted under other criminal or civil laws pertaining to the taking and giving of dowry.

    So, while I have no quarrel with any of the substantive arguments in your article, you are seeking to support them by citing (or critiquing) legislations which are irrelevant to those arguments.

    I make this point in a much broader context. A lot of the injustice meted out by our courts is because the plaintiff’s case is often based on the wrong legal foundations. I am not blaming the plaintiffs but the police who record their complaints and the lawyers filing and arguing cases on their behalf.

    PS: To the best of my knowledge, the only legislation addressing dowry per se is the Dowry Prevention Act, 1961, and the only punitive provision in the IPC dealing particularly with dowry is under Section 304B.

  7. January 22, 2008 2:31 pm

    i`m answering one of the above comment, what not men foundation instead SIFamily Foundation.

    because under dowry law (498a) our old aged mothers, pregnent sisters along with breast fed babies are jailed.

    and we fight for thier rights too.
    If todays wise women do not support our claim,someday every women will be victim of this law.

    Rest is upto you.
    want to know more truth

    • Harshul permalink
      August 20, 2014 8:48 pm

      Completely agreed. It’s not just men that face the humiliation but there whole family.

  8. ravi permalink
    January 22, 2008 2:37 pm

    First of all, this dowry misuse is not very few as the author and Raj said, it is very vast in amount. The statistics of govt are the proof for that. And other side, it is very sad that some men still feeling like they are protectors of the women or women need protection from them.[:)].

    almost 3/4 th of the cases that file under 498a are false. women taking it as a extortion tool. If women want divorce then she file 498a not divorce because by this divorce come very fast. It is very henous.

    though i am not supporting the dowry, but these type of harassment also need to be condemned. Of course now, we no need to bother much about it, there is an orgnaization, which can look after these things. What men need to do is, never surrender to those unscrupulous women.fight back, we will see how far these women misuse these laws and cliam themselves as victims.

  9. Sandeep1612 permalink
    January 22, 2008 3:38 pm

    There is a question as to why SIFF is called Family instead of Men …let me tell why….It is not men who suffer from false cases under 498A but in all the cases it is the Old Mother in Law, it is the pregnant Sister in Law, They are thrown to jail for no fault of theirs since the DIL knows that in order to break a man…through his Mother or sister in Jail….498A is not Women …infact it is the single most law which has tortured innocent old, pregnant women…it is basically a law for educated and cunning DIL only who knows how to play with the Law. I agree that uneducated and illeterate women are not using it …it is only make to empower the cunning/smart and educted DIL to blackmail whole family to have her way.

  10. January 22, 2008 4:32 pm

    Vishal, Joshan, Sandeep, Raj, thanks.

    Baawara, I agree that our police investigative mechanism leaves a lot to be desired.

    Ravi, you say three-fourths of the cases filed under under 498a are false. Do you have any reference which substantiates that?

    Vivek, thanks for the legal details.

  11. Vipul permalink
    January 22, 2008 4:54 pm

    Hi Nita,
    A slight aside …
    A friend of mine had once sent me a ‘presentation’ on precautions that NRI men should take, before marrying in India. I wish I could find it now, but one of the ‘precautions’ was to have the girls family sign an affidavit claiming that the groom had never asked for dowry.
    Such an affidavit would stand in court in case the bride decides to blackmail later …

    • Neeti permalink
      April 18, 2009 1:54 am

      Demand of money made after marriage also amounts to dowry. So, even if the affidavit is signed before wedding, it does not mean that groom’s family can never be charged for dowry.

    • The Fountainhead permalink
      August 13, 2009 1:43 am

      I dont think the affidavit is a solution because men can ask for dowry after marraieg also.


  12. January 22, 2008 5:13 pm

    Nita, I once again take my hat off to salute you for bringing up a contentious issue in such a nice and forthright manner and that too being a woman taking a man’s stand. My wife is a judge and she says that there are many cases which are not brought forth to the law because of either ignorance or with a fear to bringing disrepute to their family. It is true that such cases might exist but i have told her that 98 % of the cases are false and that Supreme Court itself has agreed that 498 A is a Draconian law and termed it as “Legal Terrorism”. I guess judges would never understand the term “Social Responsibility” before giving out judgments. God bless those souls who continue to torture their husbands with unmitigated vengeance.

  13. Raj permalink
    January 22, 2008 6:01 pm


    I completely agree with what you say on girls being married off to NRIs.Both the families must share the blame.The NRI in-laws for expecting the bride to be a subservient, (male) child bearing domestic worker even if the girl is well educated.The girl’s parents for trying to snap up trophy son-in-laws about whom they know very little.The parents of these girls would go to any length to verify the groom’s ‘background’ if he happens to live in India and even if he is a sensitive,caring gentleman.But they would not care to check even the professional details of the groom if he happens to be an NRI.Why should they discriminate against sons of the soil in such a blatant manner?I do not want this comment to be seen as anti-NRI,so I will stop with this on the NRI marriage issue.

    As for the wimps (both NRI and resident Indian) who allow their wives to be abused,you know how much I despise those silly “mamma’s boys” and “grandma’s boys”,so I will not comment on them further.

    If you notice,all the commentators on this post are men! (with the exception of Nita,ofcourse!) I know you won’t like this one bit,but I will use a (suitably twisted) ad-line from a car advertisement,”Where have all the women gone?” Why are they maintaining such a deafening silence (so far atleast) on this issue?Without them,this debate may become one-sided or some men will be forced to take up their cause.Or is it as I suspected,i.e. women who are capable of commenting on this blog do not care about this issue as long as it does not affect them,while their less fortunate sisters who put up with all the abuse do not usually get the chance to comment on such things on the web?Whatever,it would be great to have some women give their thoughts on this issue. (Of course I salute Nita for bringing up this issue!)

    • Neeti permalink
      April 18, 2009 2:00 am

      There are many times, when even a background check is not sufficient. If a man wants to hide something, he will go to any length to hide his past, lies, etc…
      An abuser will most of the time have a good repute in the society. Its behind closed doors that abuse happens.
      And when that happens, a normal girl will not be in a position to keep evidence (pictures of bruises etc…). Cmon which woman does that !!!
      I know court should investigate – but how can a woman prove what her husband did to her in the bedroom…in the darkest of nights…no one knows….no one….
      Dont be so sure…you may have sisters….friends …cousins….If God forbid they face something like this…will you speak with the same fervour against Dowry law ???

  14. January 22, 2008 6:51 pm

    The ground reality of how the government classifies as false cases in 498a or dowry deaths is very different . If there is a settlement then the case is deemed to false.

    That is the only criteria used by police . You could look at the dowry prohibition Act Handbook written by Justice Sambandham to understand that

    Also the defense side is allowed to present their evidence only in court and police are not supposed to look at both sides .One should also remember that there are exemptions for evidence requirment.

    The type of cases which would ordinarily get filtered out in the normal investigation do not get because of these anamolies of the law.

    Also unlike other laws the accussed have to prove innocence and in 95% of cases they have done so and hence were innocently implicated .

    In other laws yes prosecution may have failed to prove guilt but in 498a or dowry laws the accussed have succeeded in proving innocence . This is a very crucial difference

  15. January 22, 2008 6:53 pm

    Ram, thanks. But to say 98% of the cases are false? The women who are filing false cases maybe educated but it does not mean that the majority of educated women filing these cases are misusing the law, and nor does it mean that the husbands are not ill-treating wives.

    Vipul, I have heard of these NRI cases where false dowry cases have been filed. It’s been appearing in the newspapers. But I have also heard of cases where the NRI husbands have behaved abominably with women. Like treating them like servants, second wife etc. Neither has domestic violence been involved and nor has dowry. The woman, who is financially dependent is vulnerable. I have heard more of the latter (where women are the victims) cases. Once a man (who is an abuser) gets a woman far away from her home, he feels he can behave any way he likes. In fact I know of one case personally, quite well.

    Raj, thanks but I think it is just a coincidence that women have not commented on the post. at times people get busy. but if you ask me, when I wrote this post, I did not think that I was supporting men or supporting women. I was trying hard to see it from both sides. I agree that often women are being ill-treated and they use this law as a weapon. while I have a whole-hearted contempt for men who ill-treat women I do not think a law should be misused as it brings a bad name to the law and it affects the genuine cases. Now because of all this fuss, even women who have filed genuine cases will be looked upon with suspicion and that is what should be avoided.
    Another thing, if such a law (where proof is not required before throwing people into jail) is necessary, I think it should be for those who abuse children. A child will not lie. Children under the age of 12 who accuse an adult of abuse should be taken at their word and the attacker should be thrown in jail without any proof! A child’s word is enough!

  16. wishtobeanon permalink
    January 22, 2008 8:03 pm

    It is sad that the laws are being misused. But, I don’t think repealing these laws are the answer because women are still the oppressed lot in our society. The Domestic Violence act should be made gender-neutral and the anti-dowry law should be changed to ensure that there is no misuse.

  17. January 22, 2008 9:57 pm

    I think Baawara said a lot of things I wanted to say.

    I especially like point number 4. Most women and feminist groups use that to their advantage. But to me, that seems contradictory. If we have a small percentage of educated and literate women, then it is only that small pool that can use these laws. So these laws have no reach. The law is hence pretty useless as far as those people are concerned.

    To quote from the CPIML website (Srilata Swaminathan):
    “The main beneficiaries of the Act will, of course, be women of the propertied upper classes…..
    But for the revolutionary left organisations that see the present system as the cause for women’s oppression, these Acts are no solution to the basic problems that women face and are, at best, mere stop-gap measures. The underlying reasons for the violence against women which are her enslavement under the present system; the double-standards and hypocrisy of monogamy; the fact that she has been effectively ‘privatised’ for centuries, removed from public production, public decision-making and interaction; has no economic independence, is relegated to domestic drudgery and is virtually the personal property of her husband/in-laws is not remotely understood or tackled. It is like giving a prisoner certain rights to resist torture and abuse but doing nothing for releasing him from his shackles! ”

    As for the 98% statistic, I am not sure whether that is an exaggeration, but if I am not mistaken Karan Thapar uses it in his show The Devil’s Advocate, with Renuka Chaudary.

    Another thing that has been missed, which I mentioned in one of your older posts, is about men on the RECEIVING end of DV (not the act). In this post, you have mostly touched on innocently accused men, which isn’t the same thing as men being abused. Unfortunately, the way things are in India, I don’t expect there to be any statistics in the near future.

    As for the DV act, its misuse is guaranteed. The act is for any ‘aggrieved’ person, wife or not. So if you have had a girlfriend 2 decades ago, and she just lost her job… look out. You might have had a verbal fight, in which she was an equal participant, but then again, men should respect women under all circumstances and so I guess that is justifiable (I hate the internet for just one reason, sarcasm is tough to convey).

    All in all, it is the attitude of the government and the pro-DV people that annoys me the most. Their stance is usually contradictory at best.

    @Nita: About what you said about children. I am unsure if you meant that in all seriousness. I don’t think any person should be put into jail based on someone’s word. Children lie. They can be coached to lie. The are far easier to bribe as well. I’ll get you a chocolate if you say in court this man touched you. And the parent’s get rich! Or they get even with someone. The potential for misuse if a law is to go on someone’s word, man, woman or child is potentially disastrous for any society.

  18. January 22, 2008 11:32 pm

    Again nobodies word is proof . nobody should be incarcerated on a childs word beucase there are psychologists who have now been found gulty of planting false memories in children . In fact a study was done which showed how easy it is to demonise and make children belive an awfull thing happened when it did not.

    1st principle of justice : one shall not use loaded words like violence in civil cases

    2nd principle : word is not enough to prove in civil and criminal matters.

    3rd principle : thou shall not use the word police , jail , bail , bonds, tadipar in civil matter

    4th principle : matrimonial , civil and criminal offense are three different thins requiring differin glevelso fproof

    5th principle. Trial is the right of the accused not the complainant .

    The DV act and 498a igonore these principles

  19. January 22, 2008 11:35 pm

    Legal violence or legal abuse is the worst form of violence becuase you can run away from a private party abuser or violent but you have no opition but to sumit to legal abuse and violence

  20. January 22, 2008 11:41 pm

    I feel it sand when someone use the term mamas boys it displays an extreme cynical , hatred based attitude towards men.
    For centuries poor them they sacrificed their lifes
    remember the titanic 90% men died 90% women survived

  21. January 23, 2008 6:49 am

    Hi Guys,

    I haven’t been posting for a while since I was busy .
    But, couldn’t resist posting at this one today because of the comment made by Raj. 🙂

    From my personal experience, I can only speak for middle class women.
    But, I would like to put forward a question to the guys out there?

    How many of you guys are willing to get married without getting a dowry(either forced or unforced)?

    I am yet a see an arranged marriage in India without any dowry component.

    Attitude of educated women :

    In most of the families educated women accepts to give dowry only because of their parents.
    In the arranged marriage system, however capable the women is, by default (unforced) dowry is given to the groom’s family.

    Obviously, women of this generation are not ready to accept social customs as such. They will have questions like:

    1. Why should I give dowry if I am earning as much as him?
    2. How can he truly love me if he is expecting money from me?

    So, if any of the groom’s relatives talk about dowry they get easily triggered. By continuously getting exposed to such family members from groom’s side, she might decide to revenge.

    Most of the time, this happens only if the husband is not mentally supporting the wife.

    If she is taking up such court action, groom’s family don’t even realise the mistake they had done. Because, it is so normal in other families, they tend to think that DIL is overreacting and claim that as a false case.

    According to them, they didn’t physically harass her and they haven’t done anything wrong.

    Support from women’s family:

    In most cases, women’s family will support such initiative only if the husband’s family harasses her very bad. Otherwise, they will just advise her to adjust.

    Because of the social pressure and question about future, women don’t usually take this step until it mentally stresses them out too much.

    Even if the groom’s family harasses her if the groom is supportive then this can be avoided to some extent.
    Unbiased approach by guys is critical for family’s success.

    Upper Class:

    They might take this route because:

    1. Being single women can be viewed as normal
    2. They have all the treasures to be independent being alone and don’t have to lift their nail
    3. Parents are usually supportive
    4. It is comparatively easy to get remarried


    Revenge against MIL and SIL:

    I am sure this is a controversial topic. If the DIL is not working, most of the time she stays with MIL and SIL and they are usually possessive about their son/brother.

    It makes the DIL to be left alone and her anger might turns towards them as they are responsible for causing the mental stress to her.

    I am not justifying anything here, but just as the DIL, I believe MIL and SIL’s are not ideal.

  22. Raj permalink
    January 23, 2008 7:24 am


    When I used the term “mamma’s boys”,I was NOT referring to all men.As a male myself,I simply despise those men who adopt double standards towards women i.e. they respect their mothers and sisters but adopt a nasty attitude towards all other women,including their wives.It is these double standards that I hate in those silly “mamma’s boys”.It would be a different thing if a male-bashing feminist used those words,but as a male who cannot tolerate the despicable double standards of SOME of my fellow men,I have a right to use that term,don’t I?


    //…But, I would like to put forward a question to the guys out there?
    How many of you guys are willing to get married without getting a dowry(either forced or unforced)?…//

    It is because of comments like the above that can ONLY be asked by women,I wanted women to comment on this post.Because otherwise,this discussion would become one-sided and against women.

    If my comment is seen by anyone as an attempt to criticise educated women,I apologise! That was not my intention! I know for a fact that despite the misuse of the law by some women,a large majority of women undergo daily abuse at the hands of their in-laws because of dowry and other reasons.And it is only a woman who can express this in the right manner.That was my only reason for making that comment 🙂

  23. January 23, 2008 8:20 am

    wishtobeanon, ofcourse these laws are necessary. the problem is too acute in our society.

    DD, I highly doubt that these laws are useless as you say. I think they are useful for the majority. If you are saying that educated women are not beaten up or their families are not asked for dowry, then I am afraid that is not something I can agree with. As for the children remark, I guess I wrote that on impulse, and you are right, kids can be manipulated by adults.
    As for DV against men by women, there were no reliable statistics that i could find. But certainly if a man is beaten up by his wife, he should be able to file a case under the DV law.

    Priya, thanks. I agree with you wholeheartedly that DIL’s are ill-treated often, akin to mental cruelty. the SIL, MIL and her own husband gang up against her and treat her like an outsider. often a DIL is treated like a servant, and she is expected to do most of the household chores, even if she is working outside the home. I know of a case where the cook was sacked as soon as the DIL entered the house, even though the DIL had a full-time job. the SIL and MIL were housewives, but they did not cook even before the DIL arrived!
    So even if the dowry component is missing (which usually means that dowry has been given and taken voluntarily) and this isolation, interference, and snide remarks over many years can arouse feelings of revenge. In our society if a woman takes revenge she is immediately termed as evil or a witch but men also take revenge (Men are more aggressive and more often take revenge against women as the many acid and murder cases and DV cases show) more often.
    This does not mean I support the use of the dowry law being misused…because as I mentioned, the law should not get a bad name under any circumstances.

  24. January 23, 2008 8:27 am

    Nita: I did not say only educated women are victims or that they are not. I am saying, the law does not reach its entire intended population. So what happens in those cases?

    As for the DV act, men cannot seek refuge under it. That is one of the biggest reasons for all the criticism it is getting.

  25. January 23, 2008 9:04 am

    DD, the attempt should be made to get more and more sufferers to use the law.

  26. January 23, 2008 9:16 am

    Though I am not supporting women misusing the law, one has to note that:

    Women Sufferers not using the law because of society pressure would be much more than men sufferers being abused by the law.

  27. January 23, 2008 9:59 am

    A law gets bad name when it is made easy to misuse and used as a tool to abuse decent folks and extort money . If you do not want it to get bad name Stop the extortion in the name of the laws.

    Just becuase the term is used by a man does not mean it is not cynical abuse.

    @ priya
    I can provide too many examples of families who have not taken dowry and given dowry . They do not go around pledging no dowry etc but they just go ahead and do it . Its not at all difficult to have dowryless marriage.

    We seem to fall in the trap of blaming the victims by saying that if dowry was not the issue then they must still have done something . It is classic case of saying that rape victim deserved becuase she/he must have done something to deserve it. Let us not play blame the victim game

    @others again
    Let us not treat badly those who have done the right things .let us strengthen the hands of those who have done right and yet are made to suffer because the laws built wrongly , due procedures have been dropped, evidence has been dropped. The main demand is to bring these laws in line with the other criminal procedures with no expemptions. Nowever is there a demand to scrap the dowry laws. The demand is to make gender neutral and bring procedures in line with other laws.

  28. Raj permalink
    January 23, 2008 10:06 am


    Thanks for bringing up the DIL,MIL,SIL issue.That is exactly what I wanted to see on this post.I am as outraged as you are about this issue,only I would not have been able to put it as clearly as you women have done.

    I think that this DIL,MIL,SIL issue is a self-perpetuating cycle.It is like ragging in colleges.The first years who are ragged think it is their right to rag their juniors as soon as they move to the next year of study.Usually the ragging becomes even more despicable as the years go by,often resulting in tragic consequences.

    Similarly,when ill-treated DILs grow up to become MILs,they want to have their revenge on the hapless DILs who have come to live with them (Could this be one more reason why women want to have a son?) The MILs want to vent their anger on the DILs only because they themselves were abused when they were DILs.Exactly the similar case as in ragging.

    Unless this vicious cycle is broken,this issue would not go away.There would be no hope for women if they themselves are so deeply divided on this issue.Men cannot solve this problem.(Note how I was chided for expressing my disapproval of “mamma’s boys”).I sometimes feel that one half of the female population is the greatest enemy of the other half.Males are merely tools to be used by one half or the other (though some men can be vicious and nasty towards women).

  29. January 23, 2008 10:10 am

    what is the simple problem of making both Dowry laws and DV laws gender neutral .

    Is it now Denial of sex which is an offense is something almost every women does to her husband and on this point itself every women will be termed violent.

    Is it now that almost every woman has insulted their hubbies at some point on various points .

    Is it that almost every women will keep mulling about something imagined grievience and make life hell for years together and such women willbe termed violent.

    Is it that restoration of custody will mean that it will mean more women will be targetted.

    Legal equallity is far important becuase you have no recourse beyond.

    Legal violence , legal abuse ,legal extortion is far more grevious because you have no recourse the way you can do in private violence , abuse or extortion

  30. January 23, 2008 10:18 am


    As I said, I speak only based on my personal experience and if there are ppl who are not giving or taking dowry, that’s good.

    But, just that I haven’t seen such a marriage happening yet. Please note here, I do consider unforced dowry as dowry as it is considered a social custom by givers and takers.

    People(DIL) gets aggravated for mental torture even though dowry might just play a minor component in it. This result in magnification of a problem and makes them take revenge(I am not saying this is correct).

    But, I feel in Indian families there is too much interference from groom’s relatives that makes the situation worse.

  31. January 23, 2008 10:25 am

    That is your percpetion becuase my perception is different abused men just dropping of communication and silently suffering is larger becuase there is no societal support , legal support for them and if they try to seek any support both of them furthur abuse them doubly.

    Only Abusive women would file a false dowry case.
    This society is about communicating about abuses suffered and seeking just relief

  32. January 23, 2008 10:34 am


    Though both women and men are possessive women tends to express it very often.

    I always wonder why a men showering love on a women is not tolerated by a men’s family
    women showering love on their husband is well tolerated by women’s family?
    (Ofcourse, there will be exceptions.)

    Don’t you think it is a social attitude?

    All the issue’s a DIL is facing will be faced by a DIL entering the women’s family.

    So, I believe it is a attitude problem.

    But, I might be wrong as I don’t want to offend anyone. 🙂

  33. January 23, 2008 10:41 am


    I can talk only what I peceive.

    And , from what I had seen in few families men think women is abusing because they are magnifying a minor issue.

    But, for the women filing the case it is major issue.

  34. January 23, 2008 10:42 am

    Its not my fault that you have friend and family circle like that . No pun intended . All Marriages I have attended have dowry less be it guys side or girls side.

  35. January 23, 2008 10:52 am

    Same way, it is not my fault that all the marriages you attended are dowry less which seems to be an exception than normal. 🙂

  36. January 23, 2008 10:59 am

    Bharati, I think you are very lucky to have known dowryless marraiges. but if you take it as Indian society as a whole it’s not the case. but what about the case when the girls side has to spend on the marraige and not the boy’s side. surely that is also a kind of dowry? I have heard of cases where expenses are shared equally but i do not know anyone who has done so. I guess I am part of the majority.
    But I wholeheartedly agree with you that abuse by husband’s family is not a justification to misuse the dowry or DV laws. However I don’t think that all women who do misuse are abusive as you say. they could simply be taking revenge.
    Raj I think that when you say the cycle is perpetuated (MIL ill-treating DIL’s) I think (this is just my personal observation and my personal opinion) I think it’s a myth. An abusive, mean DIL in turn turns into an abusive mean MIL. It’s personality. I have personally known some wonderful MIL’s in my family who have said that they will never ill-treat their DIL’s because they were victimized and suffered themselves. A dominating and possessive, person, whether man or woman, will try to control and manipulate, and age is rarely a factor. It’s just that society gives an MIL power to do so, while a DIL has less power. But if she, an abusive dominating DIL gets a timid MIL, she will be really mean. I know of such cases too.

    P.S. Raj,, I don’t think only women can solve this problem. Men need to stand up for their wives. I share your contempt for Mamma’s boys. A boy needs to become a man and support his life long partner. If he can’t, he shouldn’t get married. I know that if I had a family which ill-treated or was rude to my husband, I would fight with my own family to support my husband, because I love him. Luckily I never had to make this choice, and in any case, I don’t think men will take any sort of insults from their wives’ parents.

  37. January 23, 2008 11:22 am

    Go to maharashtra you will find dowry less marriages.

    “But I wholeheartedly agree with you that abuse by husband’s family is not a justification to misuse the dowry or DV laws. However I don’t think that all women who do misuse are abusive as you say. they could simply be taking revenge.”

    Revenge is an abusive persons reaction, justice is decent persons.

    Well then wouldn’t we have say that some men who may have killed their wifes may have done it becuase they were facing abuse and taking revenge

    the mumbai molestors were taking revenge becuase the two girls abused them

    The guy killed jessica lal becuase she abused and provoked that guy and he took revenge .

    No each of the above things happened becuase the personality were abusive .
    Let us not try to give justifications for misusing the laws.

    Why do you feel the need to justify behaviour of abusers of law.

    In terms of marriage expenses sharing I have enough examples.

  38. January 23, 2008 11:24 am

    No Marriage Expense sharing does not happen but What happens is that that guys family pays for reception. When you count that in then the monetary expenses as cause of marriages balance out.

  39. Vivek Khadpekar permalink
    January 23, 2008 11:26 am


    //…I am yet a see an arranged marriage in India without any dowry component…//

    That is simply too sweeping a statement. All I can say is that you are yet to see much of India.

    I know of several arranged marriages, straddling four generations and involving families of modest means, in which no dowry was demanded or given.

    On the other hand, I also know of several “love” marriages in which dowry WAS demanded and given, and also the bride was atrociously maltreated in her husband’s home.

    These include families of relatives, friends and acquaintances, roughly equally divided between the groom’s and the bride’s “side”.

  40. January 23, 2008 11:27 am

    Bharati, I am not justifying revenge. People who take revenge are disturbed and should be pay for any illegal acts. But I do not agree that only abusive people take revenge. there are many instances of very mild, timid people doing so when they are pushed to the limit.

  41. January 23, 2008 12:00 pm

    Filing a complaint of dowry is cold blooded act . It is not somrthing done in a rush of moment . It is done after deliberation and consultation with lawyers.
    it is done when a guy files for divorce or restitution of conjugal rights .

    Only an abusive person would do such acts.

    I am quite concerned that you want to follow the blame the victim mentality .

    Just as we cannot and should not blame provocative behaviour for rape and molestation we cannot similarly blame provocative behaviour for behaviour of misuser of laws.

  42. January 23, 2008 12:03 pm

    one correction person filing a true dowry case is not abusive lest people misuse my words

  43. January 23, 2008 12:14 pm

    Hi Vivek,

    I never said that I had seen much of India.

    As I had mentioned it is purely based on my personal experience and I didn’t grew up in urban India. I grew up in rural India.

    I had seen unforced dowry in most of the marriages, in which the bride’s family has to be blamed as they think giving an X amount of dowry is something of a status issue.

    So, you can relate my knowledge as something gained from observing less than 100 marriages.

    I am happy to learn that there are families who don’t accept dowries from this forum.

    But, from a girl’s point of view, if you think of the probability that she will get married, when she says upfront she will not give dowry is very less.(though it exists) .

    I am not saying that love marriages are without dowry.
    Just dowry exists to a minimal extent when compared to arranged marriages.


    Sorry if had offended any good hearted men who don’t accept dowry.

  44. January 23, 2008 12:34 pm

    Priya, I grew up in urban India and in Maharashtra and I am a Maharashtrian. I have seen dowry all around me. Everywhere, but ofcourse it is not ‘enforced’ as such. It is given and taken. I have seen a lot of India but agree not the whole of it. But I have friends from most states. In some cases it is worse and in some cases it is better. I agree I do tend to meet upper middle class educated professionals.

    Bharati, you keep insisting that I am ‘blaming’ the victims. Kindly refrain from twisting my words. I am trying to find the reasons for the behavior (my habit is to always find reasons, and these reasons may be wrong or right, that is not the issue) but if this is misconstrued as blaming victims I am sorry this is not the case.
    I don’t know how old you are Bharati, but from my many years of experience let me assure you that human behavior is very complex and there is a psychological reason for even ‘bad’ behavior. Nowhere have I said it is justified but understanding the ‘other’ side is what I try to do in all cases in my writing and in my personal life. I ‘try’ but do not always succeed.`

    P.S. Priya, by dowry I don’t mean cash, but ‘gifts’ including that of jewellery which are subtly demanded by the boys side, and about 75 percent expenditure on marriage. also long list of invitees from the groom’s side and demands of the kind of food, venue etc. all of which results in higher costs.

  45. January 23, 2008 2:14 pm


    Times have changed and so has India. There are innumerable instances of dowryless marriages now. And one need not look far, for one can find such instances in one’s own family as well.

    You say you are writing only from what you have experienced and perceived. Honestly speaking, i admire you and respect you for acknowledging so. At the same time i would like to share my own experience as well.

    My brother had a dowryless marriage, no give and take. My maternal cousin had a far more simple, dowryless marriage to the extent that only he, his father (mother not alive) , his 2 brothers went to the temple where the marriage was solemnised. Its been 4 years, they are happy, have kids as well.

    I consider these 2 guys fortunate and lucky since they got understanding spouses.

    4 of my other cousins weren’t as lucky though. Despite having dowryless marriages they ended up getting falsely implicated under Section 498A of IPC.

    3 of those cases stand resolved now…

    One started in 1992, took almost 13 years to resolve. The girl took away most of the items in her in-laws house which did not even belong to her !! And how did she manage to do so ? Only because her father happened to be a leading Professor of Law in a reputed University of India !! …..influential enough to make the govt. machinery dance to his tune.

    Second case took almost the similar time, but was far more worse in terms of why the husband’s family was falsely implicated. The girl turned out schizophrenic ! And when it was brought to the notice of the girl’s family (within 3 months of marriage) the obvious happened…. 498A !

    Third case took the most prevalent route to resolve. The girl was demanding a share in the joint family property of her husband (within 6 months of marriage), wanted to stay away from her in-laws, and was forcing the boy to shift to her parent’s hometown. Her sister being a lawyer in their hometown filed 498A after she realised the family wasn’t giving in to her demands. The modus operandi was simple… Give or Perish !! Blackmail perhaps is the right word for it.

    Neither my cousin nor any of his family members had ever been to court or police. At the same time they did not want to give in to her unjustified demands. In court the judge asked them to ‘settle’ the case amicably than fight it out for years. From share in property the girl came down to a few lakh of rupees to withdraw the charges. But the guy was adamant. He said he would not pay even a single penny for he had not faulted anywhere. He said he was willing to go to jail !! This left the girl with no choice but to bring the amount further down….. she stooped to a few thousands to grab whatever was coming her way !!

    Fourth case is still pending in court. This case is another classic example of how girls in India use NRIs for immigrating to foreign shores, be it for reuniting with their lovers abroad or for leading a lavish lifestyle.

    My personal experience with such lop-sided laws says that 498A is the most dangerous weapon in the hands of women today. Though it was created as a shield but its been more rampantly used as a weapon….. a tool to seek revenge, a tool to blackmail in-laws’ family, a tool to break families. SC was right in terming its misuse as unleashing ‘LEGAL TERRORISM’.

  46. January 23, 2008 6:09 pm

    Nita This blog write up is very good. I have to be fair.

    I had no intention of doing it however I believe that to say there must be some other fault causing for filing false dowry case is wrong and leads to blame the victim in the similar fashion as sayiing that rape happened because the victim wore provocative clothes.

    I think if you are from maharasthra and have not attended dowryless marriages it does comes as a big surprise to me or you were using a rhetoric .

    but anyways this was one of the more interesting discussion and know there is lot that needs to be done to change the mindsets.

  47. January 23, 2008 6:18 pm

    “Mamas boys” is an abusive and insult term used when the husband does not dance to the tunes of wifes.
    It is used as controlling mechanism to to isolate a husband from people who may be caring of him .

  48. January 23, 2008 6:41 pm

    Bharati, thanks. Yes, I have tried my level best to see both sides. But frankly as I do not know any cases of false filing of these cases personally, it is more difficult for me. I was trying to understand why. From Katyayani’s comment it is clear that these things happen when marriages have broken up.
    I agree that the term Mamma’s boys is an insulting term. But have you must have heard the term Joru ka gulam? That is when the husband dances to the tune of the wife! Which is worse? I think both are bad. Every human being needs to stand up to his own beliefs and not get influenced by others. Whether man or woman.

  49. Raj permalink
    January 23, 2008 8:37 pm


    I do not know why you feel so offended by the term “mamma’s boys”.It is no more or no less insulting than the term “henpecked husbands”.And by the way the term need not be used only for married men who refuse to dance to the tune of their wives.It can be applicable to even an unmarried man.Broadly speaking,the term refers to a man who is no longer a child but refuses to think on his own and instead does everything according to the whims and fancies of his mother,even if that is not what he would normally do on his own.All children would naturally fall into that category but when a man has become an adult,he normally thinks on his own.If he does not,he deserves to be called as a “mamma’s boy” whether he is married or not.It is mildly insulting,no doubt,but then it is meant to be that way just as the term “henpecked husband” is meant to be mildly insulting.

    And by the way it is no more insulting than the term “abusive woman” that you have used so frequently to refer to women who have filed a case.

    Let’s face the reality.To put it diplomatically,”Not all men are saints and not all women are angels”.So there is nothing wrong in giving people the names that they deserve.

  50. Raj permalink
    January 23, 2008 8:51 pm

    Nita,Priya,Bharati,Vivek,Katyayani,Depressed Doormat,Wishtobeanon,

    I am happy that this debate has now become balanced.I was worried that with only men commenting on the post initially,the discussion would become anti-women.I know for a fact that many women suffer a lot due to harassment from their in-laws and also that men suffer a lot due to harassment by their wives who misuse the law.We need to see both sides of the story before coming to any conclusion about whether the law is useful or not.

  51. January 23, 2008 9:03 pm

    Raj, you are the person who has made this a balanced discussion! Thank you!

  52. January 23, 2008 9:46 pm

    “But I do not agree that only abusive people take revenge. there are many instances of very mild, timid people doing so when they are pushed to the limit”

    When you say pushed to the limit it means they are victims of abuse. That would not be a misuse of the DV act. It is misuse when either there isn’t sufficient reason for taking refuge under it (for e.g. quarrels between partners) or just plain maliciousness.

    What I still don’t get is how everyone who has commented so far just assumes this is like a coin, two sides, Women being abused by men and men being falsely accused under these laws. It might be to a lesser extent, that men are victims of domestic violence (and make no mistake about it, they face physical violence too), but an omission is failure too. I have made this point before as well. It is like saying the poor commit most crimes, so let’s not worry about the crimes being committed by the rich (this is just an analogy and is not meant to be representative of reality).

    As far as “unforced” dowries are concerned, “revenge” is misuse of the law, whether the girl thinks she is just in doing so or not. I will only accept use of this law if the bride’s side refuses to pay but are forced to do so by the grooms side. The unforced dowry practices are moral failures.

    @Raj: What about daddy’s girl? Unfortunately that isn’t meant as an insult. It is supposed to convey fuzziness, unlike the term mamma’s boy, and since this post is about “equality”…

    And please don’t tell me that “mamma’s boys” cause more harm than “daddy’s girls”. I am afraid we won’t see eye to eye.

    Lastly, since we are dealing in hypotheticals, guess who everyone blames if an unmarried couple find themselves pregnant. Worse still, is if the guy decides abortion is the way to go and the girl disagrees. To those that are going to give me their “gyaan” about these scenarios, I know of such a case and hence bring it up.

  53. Raj permalink
    January 23, 2008 11:25 pm


    //Though both women and men are possessive women tend to express it very often……………..
    Don’t you think it is a social attitude?//

    Yes,I do.And I often think of gender issues in scientific,genetic and evolutionary terms,so my views may not be comprehensive.

    I think that women’s possessiveness comes from the fact that nature has conditioned them for motherhood,just like the females of all higher animals. (A female cat,for instance,is very possessive of her kittens and would not let any creature come near her kittens even if that creature does not intend to do any harm to the kittens.This is a work of nature to ensure the kittens’ survival). Similarly,women tend to be very possessive not just of their children,but of their husbands,brothers and fathers as well.So society accepts and even expects women to be possessive.But all hell breaks loose when the possessiveness of one woman (the MIL) clashes with the possessiveness of another (the DIL) 🙂

    Nature,on the other hand,has given males a minor role to play.(The males of higher animals exist only to ensure that the animal becomes genetically stronger by natural selection.They are not too concerned about the survival of the species or indeed about their own survival). So that would also explain why men (in any society) are much more likely to commit suicide than women.More women may attempt suicide but they are likely to fail because they remember that it is not what nature expected of them.Men,on the other hand,are not under any such restriction,so they just kill themselves.


    I guess you must be correct about the perpetuating DIL-MIL cycle.A mean person will be mean,and a nice person will be nice,whether it is a DIL or a MIL or a man.But if we forget both extremes (wonderful as well as mean DILs and MILs) and concentrate on those who fall in between those two categories,a cycle may become apparent (only barely though).It is just like the barely apparent victim-perpetrator cycle in college ragging.

    // A boy needs to become a man and support his life long partner. If he can’t, he shouldn’t get married //

    I whole-heartedly agree with that comment.Infact,that is what marriage is all about.If a man cannot support his wife during difficult times,it would be better for him to remain single.(It also holds good for a woman with regard to her husband).And if a mamma cannot share her boy with another woman,it would be better if she ensures that he remains single rather than turn life into hell for that woman.

    I also agree with you that women alone cannot solve this issue.Men too have a role to play,but women must take the lead and do much of the work to solve this growing problem.

  54. Raj permalink
    January 23, 2008 11:36 pm

    The Depressed Doormat,

    I am happy that you have raised the issue of “daddy’s girls”.I have no objection whatsoever to that term,and would not even mind if people use that term to classify women who abuse their husbands by misusing the law with the support of their fathers.

  55. Raj permalink
    January 23, 2008 11:43 pm


    It was you who started this discussion with your balanced article.So all of us (especially guys) have to express our thanks to you!

  56. January 24, 2008 2:12 am

    Depressed Doormat:

    “The unforced dowry practices are moral failures.”

    Or just conditioned behaviour?

    It is like prevention in healthcare. We can never be sure how many lives we save or prolong so the case is hard to make in economic terms. But we promote prevention anyway.

    I have seen some educated people demonstrate bronze age attitudes when it comes to their children’s spouses – it has not taken me by shock because it confirms what I already know about humans. We are creatures of habit. Unless we break the habit through conscious effort, it stays with us.

    Projecting from the last paragraph, I think parents give dowry anyway because they cannot risk their child’s life with a principled stance gone wrong.

    Unless we dispense with the ostentation that accompanies marriages in India, we will continue to perpetuate dowry in innovative forms. When not given in cash or kind, it will be spent on expensive receptions and decorations and so on.

    Why is this my view? My siblings got married in HIndu ceremonies. One’s father-in-law sat down and split all wedding expenses half and half with my father and wrote him a cheque before they left; all ceremonies were completed with a 1-rupee coin. The other one had a hawan and a registered marriage with parents and some close family present. No money exchanged hands. It is possible but mostly the initiative has to come and be enforced by the groom’s family.

  57. January 24, 2008 4:20 am

    Pardon my usage of the word moral. You can call it conditioning if that seems more apt.

    The point that it was intended for is that it is not a failure on the groom’s behalf for him to be tried in a court for the failures of our society. The bride’s side are equally responsible for the perpetuation of the practice. So how can you have a legal procedure to sideline just the groom and his family? That is why I said what I did in my earlier comment.

    “Projecting from the last paragraph, I think parents give dowry anyway because they cannot risk their child’s life with a principled stance gone wrong.”

    That is contradictory. That is wanting to have your cake and eat it too. If you are unwilling to battle that which ails you, why am I expected to aid in the cure? There are no free lunches…

    I completely agree with what you say in the last paragraph. But where I disagree with you, is that failure of the groom’s family to do so, does not automatically make them culprits in a Dowry case.

    Again, I shall make this point, which is starting to sound repetitive, that you cannot handpick people and lay blame on them for the customs that have been followed for centuries (not that those customs are right). To pervert a perfectly good catch phrase, when the doling out stops, the demanding will too. It is human nature to welcome free lunches.

  58. January 24, 2008 4:27 am

    @Shefaly: I re-read the last para and it seems that you might be suggesting that the groom’s family legally be held responsible for their share of the wedding expenses. While that sounds nice on the surface, you are not considering the eventuality that mismatched incomes are at play. One family might have greater means and might find the need to show off with lavish preparations. How can the other family be expected to meet those standards?

    Unfortunately, there is no logical legal stance, that I can see, that will eradicate dowry practices, apart from changing attitudes, which is, unfortunately not a rapid process.

  59. January 24, 2008 6:50 am


    I am glad that you had seen dowry less marriages and it is good to see the change happening in India.

    I am out of India for 3 years now, which might be a sufficient enough to see a substantial change that I might not be aware of.

    But, still I believe that marriages with dowry will outnumber the marriages without dowry.

    In the place where I come from, if a girl says she will not give any dowry(even as gift) the chances of her getting married is very less.

    I know of a guy who doesn’t want to get dowry and people started talking that he might have some health issues. This was like 10 years ago when I was 15.

    So, it has become a social custom these days in many places.

    I would like to add 1 more point here. Dowry system didn’t exist in these communities 100 years ago. It was considered as degrading the groom’s capability if the women brings something from their parents.

    But, now exists in all forms and the worrying issue here is people are more educated these days than they were 100 years ago. Can you believe this?

    Obviously India is so diverse, and we can’t put everything in one basket.

    It is somewhat similar to caste system. People who are not exposed to think it doesn’t exist, but it is there in almost every corner.

    I am not supporting abusive women, all I am saying is abusive men who are not being reported might(/will) be much more.

  60. January 24, 2008 7:33 am

    Shefaly, talking about dowry, my parents had a dowry less marriage many years ago. My grandfather (father’s dad) was a man before his time and he shared wedding expenses with my maternal grandfather. But I always knew that my dad’s family was exceptional. Life wasn’t like that.
    When it came to my marriage (love marriage) in these modern times, my mother in law refused to share expenses and they asked us sick questions (my husband’s uncle as his father was no more) about how much jewellery etc. my parents were shocked…but my parents gave in as they were going to give some gifts to me anyway. But what they never expected were questions and subtle demands. After I got married my jewellery was taken away for safekeeping. I heard that my mother in law also used to wear my jewellery without my consent. I didn’t care really. Now all my jewellery is with me. But I guess if my marriage had broken up I would have had a tough time retrieving my jewellery! 🙂
    All the ‘negotiations’ about the marraige expenses etc etc happened without my knowledge and my husband’s knowledge and we were only told later! We were actually not in town (both of us were working in a different towns).
    About who is responsible, well that’s a matter of viewpoint. I believe like you that the groom’s family has to take the initiative.
    Also I think whether a wedding needs to be celebrated at all or whether any gifts need to be given by the girls side, needs to be left to the couple. Parents should have no say at all. As long as parents have a say these things will keep happening, whether you blame the girls side or the boys side.

    DD, Yes if a mild person reacts violently it does mean that the person was being abused. That’s what I meant. Misusing the dowry law (which is a weapon that can be used from a distance) could be one way of getting back. But let me repeat, I am not trying to justify it! Discussing the psychological reasons is necessary I think. One needs to understand why and in any case maybe I am wrong. Maybe this is not the reason.

  61. January 24, 2008 12:29 pm

    @ Depressed Doormat:

    You say: “That is contradictory. That is wanting to have your cake and eat it too. If you are unwilling to battle that which ails you, why am I expected to aid in the cure? There are no free lunches…”

    Currently there are more dowry deaths for women than there are false cases against men in dowry cases. So it stands to reason that the risk for girls, whose parents refuse to give dowry, is significantly higher. In the marriage market in India, parents of the girl still are considered an unequal player.

    I recall a speech TN Seshan gave at IIMA. He said he was the perfect guy to fight entrenched bad practices in society and politics, because he had no children. Children, he said, weaken people’s resolve and their willingness to precipitate or participate in revolutions.. The same I think applies to dowry.

    You say: “To pervert a perfectly good catch phrase, when the doling out stops, the demanding will too.”

    That is a very difficult catch-22. A bit like why McDonald’s survives. They say there is demand and the rest vilify them for growing obesity stats. Who is to say what perpetuates what? After all there are perfectly decent grooms’ families who take the initiative and say ‘nothing doing with dowry please’ far ahead of the marriage arrangements being finalised. So I could argue exactly the opposite and that would still be valid.

    The current state of matters in India is now worse than before. Not only is dowry expected, the demand for a working girl is higher than for one who sits at home rolling chapatis. This way they can have their golden-egg laying goose and eat one too, to pervert another perfectly catch-phrase.

    Although I did not think of legally enforced sharing of expenses, now you say and I think it is a good idea! If there are mismatched incomes – something that arranged marriages try to avoid and arranged marriages are where all this dowry shit persists in much larger proportion – then they will have to discuss ahead, won’t they and settle for the lower of the common denominators?

    Your story is interesting. You may have heard the adage – ignorance of the law is no excuse. I am glad nothing untoward happened to you but if it did, then the law would be on the side of your parents.

    Oh and by the way, going by your ‘when the doling stops, demanding will too’, I would like to hear why your parents ‘doled out’ anyway. After all you were already committed in the love marriage thing. So the dowry would hardly have any impact, right? Just curious.

  62. January 25, 2008 1:42 am

    @Shefaly: I agree my statement is somewhat of a Catch 22. But having said that, I disagree with everything else you have said (almost). A catch-22, or a chicken and egg scenario is not a good enough reason for people to hold their hands up in the air and scream foul.

    “That is a very difficult catch-22. A bit like why McDonald’s survives. They say there is demand and the rest vilify them for growing obesity stats.”

    I suppose you hold McDonald’s responsible for the obesity in the US. I don’t. People are fat because of their negligent diets, not because of McDonalds, or Burger King etc.

    Bottomline, If you want something, you have to go get it. And if you are unwilling to make the effort, I am not going to go out of my way either, since as you put it, you have more to lose. That is not the attitude with which freedom fighters win independence (I don’t want this to be cliche, but unfortunately it is the best example I can give)

    As far as mismatched income weddings (your assumption of “love” marriages being dowryless is illogical, esp. after Nita’s “testimony”), there are quite a few of those. In fact, almost all the weddings I have been to (I admit that is a small number) have been where either one has means far exceeding the other. And when it comes to showing off wealth, there is no common ground, no compromise. Or must we learn that the hard way?

    I am a little confused by the last para. You quote me but I have a feeling it is aimed at Nita instead.

    On a completely unrelated note, I often use “you” to denote a group of people we are talking about. So I hope you don’t find anything offensive, as usually people do.

  63. Suffered lady permalink
    February 1, 2008 12:10 pm

    I think marriages with dowry is more now adays than before.My parents,mother in-law had dowry less marriages,but mine ,my siblings ,everybody’s with dowry.Worst is my case,they took all the money and cleared their debt ,which they have made for their daughter who was married 6 months earlier.She bought plot in that.When we asked my mother in law quarreled that they had spent on my husband’s education(Engg.)My sister’s another story,boys father told we want grand marriage .So my father gave lot of jwellery to bride,groom ,spent lavishly on marriage.But after marriage boy was not sending my sister to our house,he is telling that he never opposed dowry and and only his father did,so now my father gave a plot in my sister’s name .Again he want money to construct house and everyday quarrels with wife.

    Many people will take dowry but show off as they have not taken anything.

  64. Raj permalink
    February 1, 2008 1:15 pm

    Suffered lady,

    Thanks for expressing your thoughts.I am sorry to hear what your family has gone through.You are right,dowry has seem to have gone underground to an extent these days.And I hate to see the cycle that you mention i.e. your mother-in-law taking dowry from you because she paid dowry for her daughter’s marriage.It makes me pessimistic about finding ways to put an end to this menace.

  65. Sumanth permalink
    February 4, 2008 3:54 pm

    Why Girl’s Parents Give Dowry?

    It is not the demand by groom that makes some Indian parents to give dowry for their daughter.

    They give dowry because:

    1) The father of the girl is made to feel guilty by society unless he finds a groom for his daughter who is higher in status, money, education, height.

    The father has to live in shame if his daugher ends up “marrying down”.

    2) Feminists and society picturise men as beasts and indulge in masandry. This makes many to think that “there are few ideal men in the society”.

    So, the panicky fathers of daughters bid for the so called small minority of “suitable boys”. The bidding happens by Bribing/dowry.

    3) In India, women had no rights on parent’s property till 2003 and even now very few women exercise that right.

    Hence many girls think dowry is their share of parental property.

    4) Feminists support extravagant marriages and they are reluctant to bring laws against these marriages.

    5) Feminists do attend dowry marriages and extravagant marriages.

    Please note, Dowry laws are useless.

    For example, if I as a third person know that my friend is taking dowry, still I or police can not do anything, unless the girl or her family complains.

    The current laws of dowry do not allow a 3rd person to file a complaint of dowry taking or dowry giving. This shows that govt, politicians and also feminists all want dowry practice to remain, so that they can indulge in it and at the same time use it as an excuse to take revenge of innocent men.

    By the way, the dowry takers have 1/10th the chance of getting into a dowry cases. How?

    Imagine, a guy and his family has taken dowry of 30 lacs.

    If there is any dispute between the wife and husband, then the husband threatens to wife, “File a dowry case and you will not get a single penny and you will run around courts for 10 years. So, take 25 lacs back from me, and get lost.”

    So, dowry taking guys actually do not have to pay any maintenance of alimony. Where as non-dowry takers get screwed by criminal wives or their influential parents.

    So, present laws encourage the dowry practice in stead of eliminating it.

  66. February 4, 2008 7:37 pm

    Nita! I am not saying that there are genuine cases with regard to 498 A , but, they are very few and far in between. By and large, 498 A is a section which has been widely misused by the modern women who treat men as door mats, a doll to play with according to their whims and fancies. Just imagine this. If a wife files a case for maintenance and the husband files a case for RCR (Restitution Of Conjugal Rights), the wife cannot claim maintenance. The wife cannot also claim maintenance if she is a working woman. Apart from these two concessions, a man has got nothing to save his skin. 498 A is non-bailable, non-compoundable and non-cognizable which makes the life of a man a virtual hell. Lots of money is being spent only towards court charges and by the time the case is quashed or the man is convicted, he would be losing hell a lot of money and strength. The will to fight out against all odds is sorely missing.

  67. February 14, 2008 6:21 pm

    Abusive women is not an insulting term infact it is bigger then that it is used to refer criminal minded women. It is actually sad that many people just take the words of abusive women without any evidence .

    Any women who files a false dowry case or demands jewelleries or monies which does not come out of sweat of brow or her inheritence is being nothing but abusive.

    With regards to shefaly’s problem of her own jewelleries being kept by her mother in laws in safe custodies there are countless examples of mother in laws sister in laws father in laws who borrow stuff from husbands .

    There are also countless cases where in the daughter in laws has the jeweleries iin possesion but still makes the double demand for such and more jewelleries

    But when asked for it to be returned and when the marriage is bad a dowry case is filed citiing these demands itself.

  68. February 14, 2008 6:26 pm

    If a depressed and harassed husband kills his wife then it is not dowry death but in self defence after all the harassed husband willbe doubly abused by the legal system .

    There are examples of the same.
    Like the CA who killed his wife and carried her around in car for 8 days
    of Sapan of Kolkata who on learning his wife is adulterous and on his demanding divorce she demanded 25 lakhs or else she will trap him in false dowry case , killed her.

    May be it is time for us to have movie called provoked for men who are threatened with false dowry and harassment cases.

  69. February 14, 2008 6:38 pm

    @ Raj
    “mamas boy” is term used as an insult to a man who ruses to listen to his wife and the wife wants to blame him but says he does not follow his mind becuase he does not fillow her mind

    “joru ka ghulam” is used as term by the husbands faamilies who want him to listen to them but he has his independent mind and in many cases it may run in parallel to his wife

    Henpecked husband is a pejorative or lighter term used to husbands who are suffering from abuse at hands of their wife. Ideally the term should have been used as hubands facing Domestic violence .

    The wife who does not face Dowry and is not abusive would not file a dowry case but would go for a divorce which allows her to be safe from cruelity , marital discord etc.

    On the coin issue
    yes there are two sides to the coin but
    Only one side of the coin stays flips up and is on top . However even if the coin is heads our laws still say it is tails.

  70. February 15, 2008 5:46 am

    Any writer dishing out bull about women being victims would be right except the defnition of woman has been narrowed down to the daughter in law. The reality the entire families face due to the entry of malicious daighters in law into their homes is completely different. The courts have recognized this trend over the years.
    Here is what the courts are saying :
    Read the contents of the link below to understand what 498A is all about:

  71. February 15, 2008 1:27 pm

    I had just to say husband or family are not always a culprit
    sometime women (wife) too because women had joined organisation earning little bit, by which there desire and exceptations have incresed they wanna spent lot of money for travelling (trip) and need time to
    move to restaurant & all with husband and there parents intereference as they are advocate know how to use law play with juricdiction they have ego

    man missed the job lady moves to parent house no body kneel down fraction increses and moves to court

  72. February 15, 2008 2:03 pm

    an man got angaged working within bank lost the job earning handsome amt mantly puzzled
    by two bro and mother supportingly inleading life a bro support for opening short buisness
    a bro expense in marriage too mother concudively
    she being asked earlier wethere going to married by me or bank
    but not satisfied after marriage seeing low earning or nill sometime and sits back too parents house
    and if in that case family has to face juricdiction
    a man has no other option of committing sucide or
    shall he face the law (just because of bro and mom)
    can have mercy by law (498 A) or what ever

  73. Rashpal permalink
    June 7, 2008 2:08 pm

    Firstly, I would like to take the time in thanking you all for your valuable time.
    I am also a victim of this law.This law has been passed to destroy the indian husbands & their families.We are always going to remain backwards.The western countries have always been ahead of us and they will always remain ahead.If you are the judges/lawyers/ mp’s and police, it won’t be long when you too will be a victim of this law.Everyday is not sunday.If God was here, he too would have been a victim of 498A and Domestic Violence.Every four minutes a case is filed against the innocent families.It is as easy as ordering pizza.If you think for a second, how could every family-in-laws be bad.Lastly, by calling someone a criminal, he/she doesn’t become one, if India says so.That’s a different story and no comments on that.Where corruption lasts forever.I feel sorry for the innocent families who are suffering from this 498A & Dv act.Many of them have committed suicide inside the jails and outside.How long can you live in luxury, if the money was earned falsely, for your kind information it won’t last forever, and you are not going to live forever.You can bribe the police but you can not buy life by bribing God.May God Bless these women with some sense. Those that try to fly too high in a false world, always fall head first to the ground. According to me, this law should be brought to an end.It has done enough damage to the innocent families.Lastly , no more tulsi’s are left in India and nowadays you would find the new 498A and Dv act tulsi’s.

    Is this what the world is coming to?Is this what India is all about?If this is the case, than I can say, that I am ashamed to be a part of India.The people of this country are a disgrace, because they are letting corruption, false cases, and lies eat away at the very people who are trying to help.

    I agree that most women have suffered in silence, and yes their husbands deserve to be punished, but the women who are using this Law to extort money out of innocent families, should be given the worst punishment in history!!! Dowry laws should be removed forever and who came up with this idea, India itself with the pathetic laws.I think if a child is born today, he or she will have the taste of 498A when breast fed.If he is a boy, he would commit suicide after having the taste of 498A milk & dv act.Shame on India and absolute bullshit takes place in a such a country.Where was India 20 years back & look at what they have done to Sania Mirza & Harbajan Singh, India Sucks!

  74. August 21, 2008 8:37 pm

    Has any one of you read the Guide To Surviving IPC 498A ?

  75. hasibur rehman permalink
    September 4, 2008 3:45 pm

    my in laws trying to harrasse me .in future they can fight dowry case against me.

  76. anonymoys permalink
    April 9, 2009 8:04 am

    Yesterday saw this news 08/APRil/2009

    SC relief for NRI family in dowry case

    The verdict came on an appeal filed by Sundar Babu and his family against his former wife Sukanya.

    Babu said he went to the US in July 1999 and within seven months Sukanya filed cases against him and his family, including parents and maternal grandmother. She obtained a divorce in July 2001 and remarried a year later, but the case continued.

    According to one survey 87 % Dowry case filed for money extortion to settle failed marriage.

  77. May 15, 2009 2:06 pm

    Its good to read news the other way round. I am going through tough time as i see my relative has been imprisoned for no reasons under false dowry case. The married couple lived together for two months and then the gal suicided. This was filed as dowry harrassment by the gal’s parents. The guy and his parents are arrested and are suffering in jail. Truth behind suicide?! The gal had an affair before her marriage and i believe this is a murder by her ex-boyfriend. But who is interested in looking into this issue?!! Why the gal’s parents has filed false case? Answer: Obviously to shield the mistake of their daughter and to maintain family dignity. The gal’s ex-boyfriend has been interrogated as well. But the policemen were bribed and he’s set free. Now its becoming tougher for us to get my relatives in bail. None ready to listen to us. Reason Women rights. Dowry case -men must suffer. I cant withstand this unlawful act anymore. I am just praying almighty and i am trying to fight back this unjustice.

  78. Nilesh permalink
    June 15, 2009 5:41 pm

    Why men are surrering from false case .This law is for men who demands but it becomes misrable for those who are really against it.some men dont ask for bribe but still false case can distroy his i think there should be some law which will help men as well as women to come though it.What if women ask for bribe if not given then she will log case ,this is compltly opposite way which can also happen.In this case men will either suside of kill .

  79. chinni permalink
    February 21, 2012 8:31 am

    its again the legal system that is responsible for both misuse and underuse of this law..
    It takes 6-7 years to decide on a dowry cases…isnt it too much…so MANY people go for out-of-court settlement because of this..only god knows how many of such cases are genune and how many are fake…until then we will never have a clarity on number of fake and genuine cases…
    the legal system needs to be amended for its loopholes first…and then we will have a clear picture of crime rate in india…the laws can be amended after that accordingly…and this applies to all kinds of laws

  80. raman kant permalink
    May 7, 2012 12:29 am

    hi all,

    i am male 27 year , maried 1.5 year back, my wife never ever tries to listen me, we not taken any dowry , nnot even gone for big marriage & all.

    but she refused to stay in my town, due to she not liked, she always arugue with my partents, never ever listen them. when i make her underrstand she always made differeent gestures.

    now i sent her to her father mother home to sort out why all things getting wron , now from there home she start speaking different languages like dowry , harrshment etc. god knows i never ever act anything bad, not even had thought of dowry, but she is not using her mind.

    i am confused if she put any false charge , me & my family will be helpless. i talked with her parents make them understand even agreeed to stay alone, but .. things are out of control.

    i need guidance , please help me

    Raman, if your wife is threatening to level a false dowry charge it is not a good thing at all. However if you love her and want to keep your marriage intact then try and mend fences. You are saying that you and your parents have done nothing wrong. But you said you sent her away. Remember that marriage is a lifelong bond between a man and a woman, and this sacred relationship should be able to withstand parental influences. Sending your wife away is a very very serious thing. You are sending her away from her own home, a home where she has equal rights as compared to you. And I don’t mean just financial rights, but also the right to be treated with respect and love. The right to be able to share her work load with others. – Nita

    • ritu permalink
      June 22, 2012 12:44 pm

      hii raman …….well if she is not ready to stay with u or always making argue with u or ur parents than u need to know what’s the problem . i think she is hiding something or some one make her to do say ( may some one try to confuse her ) you ever try to talk about her past ( like whether she have any relation ) .it may possible that she have but u need to talk her with patient & politeness … and if she is try to harsh u , than just for u sake record every conversation between u and her .
      instead of sending her home u need to talk her but u did wrong …… if she is egotistic ,her ego does not let u and ur relation move smoothly and softly

      if she is not consider your home as her own and never try to be comfort in your home … it means that she have some problem . may regarding to your life style,,,,,or our family or your behavior or she have something wrong in her life only ,,,,i donot she have any problem regarding with work load in your home ….
      the only one solution is that you need to talk her ( plz try face to face conversation ) while talking try to record very think ….which will help u to safe your life and yours family ….
      and one more important think for talk don’t go her parents home ,call her some where else with her parents and don’t go alone ….go with some one reliable .so that if in future there is any problem regarding to your meeting you have proof to show .
      And never go her parents home alone till the problem solve and if you need to go than go with some try to record every thing ,from now onwards you need to be very careful and active toward this problem ….
      yaa she is woman so she have sympathetic point to make u harsh but in this world every problem have solutions ,,,only thing is that u need to find out and try to execute it ..

      if she is still harsh u or not ready to come after all this , after all yours endeavor that put section 9 in family court and inform this thing in our nearest police station …and one more thing if you never harsh her that she have no proof ( like medical or some saw like that ) she may try to collect false one for that she may used to call u alone you some where or in her house … in every meet u must record every thing and be very careful

      Look raman this very crucial time in your life u should do every think very carefully and you need to have patient & politeness in your behavior than an only you will be able to solve your problem and safe your marriage ,our life and our family …..plz don’t do any thing wrong …

      ritu ….

      • Amanpreet singh permalink
        August 20, 2012 11:32 am

        sir mere or meri family per false dowry case kiya hai meri wife ne, jab ki humne unse koi bhi dowry nhi li, or na hi koi demand ki thi per meri wife ko main or meri family achi nhi lgi or wo mere se divorce lena chahti hai, uske meri mather. father or mere per 498a. 406 dhara ke tahat case kiya hai. sir ye case total false case hai, sir meri reqst hai agr aap humari koi help kr skte ho too plz contact me

  81. Amit permalink
    August 31, 2012 10:33 am

    My wife was not able to adjust with me, she didnt want to do any housework. Now she wants divorce and lakhs of money. When I refused, she has put false dowry case against me and my family.

    Men be very careful in marriage! If you get married to a wrong kind of woman, she will destroy your and your familys life.

    • June 7, 2013 6:35 pm

      Our Indian culture is going under very bad manner.You said that Men should be very careful to choose wife. this is impossible in this way, because in my case , my mum choose n a girl from our relatives and in my same village,she even not able to read or right, never went to school,not even can tell what is the time,even can not read bus board where the bus goes, but those things i dont know and even my mum dont know, but her family said
      that she can right and read,. i was in gulf country and when i came for vocation i had married on 1991 as per my family arrangement, 10 years she was at my home and left my home on 2001 left behind my daughter and my mum.i was adjusted so much and my mum cared my daughter always till now. she comes to my home when i come for vocation. and she did not care my daughter until now, even though i bring my wife to Malaysia to stay with me while i was working,then once on 2005 i took my mum,wife and daughter to Singapore to visit and i always wanted her and advised her to give love to my daughter, but she never,
      0n 2010 i bring her to Singapore while i was working and applied for depandant pass for two years, and while she was staying with me, after 5 months she said that i am having headache and i want to go home and then i come back she said to me. so arranged ticket and bought 6 pices of bangles and many dresses and she left, after few months she said that,you tell your mother to get out of your home and i want to stay at your home, and this is my order,if yo don’t there will be a problem for you she first time she threaten me after 20 years of my life.i did not respond to her when ever she called me through phone.then she finally threatened me one day that i will fire my self and i will complaint to police , then
      your family will go to jail, this conversation i have recorded at my mobile phone. finally she filed that dv case against me and demand abt 46 lacks, case filed on 26-03-2013. she mentioned in the case that 0n 24-02-2012 myself and my mum,and my sister pushed her- out of my home and insisted her to bring 80 grams of gold otherwise you can not enter this home like that she filed.but the reality is she never came to my home that said we can not be careful in our life, something would happen beyond our imagination. In Indonesia the marriage life is very easy and no quarrel some,once if both partners does not like each other for any reason , they happily divorce and re marry then they introduce their partners and visit the home and in laws.this is very common in Indonesia why not we follow that country culture and both partners should learn how to give and take policy..

  82. Lovely Vishal permalink
    September 14, 2014 2:15 am

    my English is not good try to understand, plzz, I will only say that , you all MEN are saying that law should be like this law should be like that , you and Me we all know we can do nothing against this law , if u think that you can get justice from court then forget it, because most of the cases held in a court were the judge is a lady ,and about the side of a man she always say to man’s lawyer that you are wrong you and your man are wrong , if this women has false dowry case then prove it , If man saying she has no proof then judge says judge says she is saying that is enough , and no women like to destroy her married life, then man has no words to say , judgment is man is criminal , when mans lawyer ask from civil court to apply in high court she judge says high court has no time for these type of cases, application refused, Thats y all men who are not married ,or not face cases but still have mentelity to love a women from heart and hate a women from soul, y we cant love together or for each other, i really want do something not only for victime men and for victim women also ,but i know i cant do anything , i m very sad 😦

  83. v.puri permalink
    June 23, 2015 4:45 pm

    These draconian laws are wreaking havoc. Time for the judiciary to wake up. Save the families of the boys this humiliation & torture. If this continues for long men will be scared to get married. Do something for the sisters & the mothers too they are also WOMEN.

  84. Varunkumar permalink
    July 2, 2015 12:34 pm

    these type of laws are destroying our Indian society. Indian feminist organizations should be aware of these type of false cases. Law should be made gender neutral.
    Men are too human beings. Family laws sec.498a and DV are misusing by some women’s
    past few years.Sec.498A has destroyed lakhs of families in India including women also.
    It is so unfortunate that even innocent men, old grandmothers, women’s relatives are also put behind bars without proper investigation.

    Let the latest supreme court guidelines of Stop immediate arrest may help all these innocent families and men.

  85. v.puri permalink
    July 4, 2015 10:21 pm

    Should harrassed husbands too tk to d streets to b heard? Stop d misuse of 498a etc by having misuse clauses. Daughter in law is not the only woman who needs the legal support. What is the fault of a mother or a sister who go thru the stress of dese false complaints. Cum on wake up,& do smting before its too late.

  86. September 13, 2015 7:45 am

    In India false rape case and false dowry case are very common. Changing laws is the need of the hour. Female rapist should be punished just like male rapist.

  87. Vinay permalink
    April 29, 2016 12:58 pm

    To begin with, there are so many comments, I wish I could read them all but couldn’t. Speaking as an Advocate having lived and practiced and observed law in my life only in Delhi Courts, from where I draw my observations. Firstly, educate vs. illiterate has no bearing at all so far as I’ve seen. My household uneducated maid wanted me to file a bevy of Petitions to arm twist the husband. I refused (well, before anybody starts trowing any mud, let me clarify that I don’t do any matrimonial cases for either side…the allegations and falsity raised are nauseating). But did it stop the lady? No, Sir…there are hundreds of Advocates to take such cases. And worst of all, almost all of them advise women to go after the man with all guns blazing. I followed a case where the ground of cruelty was Father in Law eyeing his Daughter in law, though no evidence to this end was produced. I’ll give one more case so bear with me. It was a lad’s case against the husband not paying her maintenance under the Code of Criminal Procedure, so he was behind bars. The lady judge tried to explain the litigant lady to let the guy out so he could earn to pay maintenance. The husband pleaded that being a rickshaw puller, if he’s being imprisoned for the last 3-4 Court hearings…let me out and I’ll try to earn. The lady judge agreed but the lady litigant refused and stated that she’d rather have the husband behind bars than maintenance money, and the Judge was legally powerless to do anything else. If that is not vengeance, I don’t know what is.

    And so, to hell with education or otherwise. Police and judges are rather afraid of the women, after all, which policeperson or Judge will want his name flashed in newspapers and cheap television for being cruel to an abla naari!

  88. October 11, 2016 11:07 am

    Dear Nita,

    I feel nowadays men also need protection from false 498/a cases. I personally am a victim of an ongoing case. My ex wife has a lot of Psychological problems which i realised few weeks after our wedding, which was supposed to be a love marriage turned nightmare. My bad, we knew each other few weeks before marriage and met through a best friend. Everytime we had a fight, she used to run away from the house, me and her family members used to go search for her all over the city. She came back when she wanted to come back. I couldn’t run away! Social pressure from both sides as her family were rich and influential people and i come from middle class. One afternoon she strangled me almost to my death but all these incidents i do not have proof and i did not know whom to approach. After fours years of torture from her and her parents of constant nagging as to how not suitable i am for their family, i got an opportunity to run away and hide. They filed a false dowry harassment case against me and my family, got my father and mother and sisters imprisoned under false pretext and i couldn’t even come back because my life was under threat. I couldn’t help but see my family suffer and they accept the pain in silence cos they knew that my life was in danger. Almost nine years later, she is happily married (even without officially signing the divorce with me) has a second child with her present husband. But me and my family continue to go to courts as she still has the false case filed against me and my family. The only solution is that she wants 25 lacs to cancel the charges against me and my family.
    The government is so busy protecting women that it is neglecting men. Agreed there are a lot of actual women who are victims but what about those women who abuse this law and extort money? Does the government actually care? What about all the agony, pain, fear and depression me and my family are facing and god knows till when!!!

    Thank you for bringing up this subject and god bless you for exposing some light on this subject.


  1. Save Indian Family Foundation, husbands, harassed, Domestic Violence Act 2005, anti-dowry law, non-bailable, non-compoundable, cognizable, Prevention of Terrorist Activities Act, POTA, dowry demands

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