Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Husband’s act forcing wife to self harm is cruelty: HC

Husband's act forcing wife to self harm is cruelty: HC

Tuesday, August 24, 2010, 20:25

PTI

New Delhi: An act of a husband that has the potential to drive a wife to take a step which causes injury to her would amount to subjecting her to cruelty, ruled the Delhi High Court which sentenced a man to life term for murdering his spouse.

The court also held the man guilty of the offence of subjecting his wife to cruelty and awarded three years' jail term by relying on the dying declaration of the victim.

"Even if the woman subjected to cruelty does not actually cause any harm to herself, the act committed by the accused has the potential to drive her to take such a step and the act would constitute cruelty within the Indian Penal Code," a bench, comprising Justices V K Jain and B D Ahmed, said.

Convict Trilok Chand contended that the victim committed suicide because she was suffering from epilepsy and the dying declaration was tutored as it did not bear the endorsement of the doctor.

"We are satisfied that the dying declaration made by the deceased was not a product of any tutoring or prompting on the part of any of her family members .... had the dying declaration been tutored one, the burning would have been imputed by the victim not only to her husband but also to the other family members.

"There is no evidence before us that the deceased was so fed up with the epilepsy, she was alleged to be suffering from, that she would commit suicide," the court said.

Earlier, the trial court had also sentenced three other family members to 10 years jail term each for subjecting the victim to cruelty and dowry death under the IPC.

However, the High Court acquitted the family members on the ground that the victim had not made any allegation against them in her dying declaration. According to the police, the victim was burnt to death by her husband in 2005 here. The victim had stated in her dying declaration that the convict had set her on fire in the presence of her in laws.

Courtesy_

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