Delhi Court Acquits Husband, in-Laws of Dowry Death, Cruelty Charges

A court here on Monday acquitted four accused people, including the husband and in-laws of charges of causing dowry death and cruelty, saying the prosecution “miserably failed” to prove that there was a dowry demand.

Additional Sessions Judge Shivali Sharma was hearing the case against Neetu’s husband Ashok Kumar Toor and her three in-laws, who were accused of committing cruelty and demanding dowry from the woman.

According to the prosecution, the acts of the accused persons drove the woman to take the extreme step of hanging herself within three years of her marriage on August 4, 2015.

The judge said the entire complaint was silent regarding the demand for the dowry and the kind of harassment or cruelty inflicted on the woman.

She said the testimonies of the deceased’s two brothers and 12-year-old son (born from Neetu’s first marriage) were “neither consistent nor specific about the dowry demands and harassment to the deceased on account of non-fulfilment of the dowry demand.”

The court said the testimonies of the brothers were “highly insufficient” to buttress the charges, while the son was not an eye-witness to the alleged demands or beatings of his mother.

“It appears that one of the main reasons for the dispute between the husband and wife was the work profile of accused Ashok Kumar Toor and his low earnings,” the court said

“The woman was not satisfied with the income and the casual manner in which the husband took his work,” it said.

Underlining that the evidence of the two brothers and the son was not credible or convincing, the judge said, “I have no hesitation in holding that the prosecution has miserably failed to prove on record beyond any reasonable doubt that any dowry demands were ever made by the accused persons from the deceased or her family members.”

It also “miserably failed to prove on record” that Neetu was subjected to cruelty or harassment for or in connection with any demands of dowry soon before her death by any of the accused persons, the judge added.

Giving the accused persons the benefit of doubt, the court acquitted them of offences under the Indian Penal Code sections 498 A (husband or relative of husband subjecting a married woman to cruelty), 304 B (dowry death) and 34 (common intention).

Related Articles

Latest Articles