Centre to introduce penal provisions in the Dowry Prohibition Act

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According to an official in the Union Ministry of Women and Child Welfare, the Centre is considering to introduce penal provisions in the Dowry Prohibition Act . The provisions will thus ensure punishment or penalty to those who misuse the Act.

Earlier this month, the Supreme Court of the country had already issued directives to the state governments for the purpose of instructing police not to go on an arresting spree the moment a case under Section 4984 of the IPC is registered. The police are also requested to satisfy themselves about the necessity of any arrest under the parameters laid down by the Section 41 of Criminal Procedure Code.

Expressing apprehensions over the misuse of the anti dowry law, the apex court further stated that disgruntled wives increasingly use the Act to harass in laws.

With the objective of providing quick relief, there was also a proposal to connect certain provisions of the Domestic Violence Act to the Dowry Prohibition Act. Notifying the list of gifts exchanged during the wedding may also be made mandatory under the new provisions. The failure to do so may lead to heavy penalties, both for the groom and the bride and may include a three year term in jail.

Aggrieved women may be permitted to file their cases either at the place of offence or her residence.